James Harris, a former professional wrestler known as Kamala, “The Ugandan Giant”, has passed away. He’s 70.
“Unfortunately, the rumors are correct,” said Kenny Casanova, co-author of Harris’s autobiography, Kamala said, write on Facebook. “To make matters worse, it was Corona who took him away; He’s one of the good guys. “
Harris became famous during the heyday of professional wrestling in the 1980s, battling superstars like Hulk Hogan, Andre the Giant and The Undertaker for World Wrestling Entertainment, later known as WWF, or World Wrestling. Federation
Wrestling icon Bret “The Hitman” Hart said Harris played the role of “a frightening monster” on the ring, with a tribal mask, face paint and body paint on a 6′7 “frame, weighing 380 pound. But the reality couldn’t be any different.
“Unlike his heel character, he’s one of the friendliest, most beautiful, funniest people I’ve ever known in professional wrestling,” Hart wrote on Instagram. “Always a kind and cheerful meek spirit. I’ll miss him for always being nice to me. ”
Also unlike his character, Harris is not from Uganda. He’s from Mississippi.
“I’ve never been to Uganda,” Harris told Bleacher Report in a 2014 filing:
In 2012, Harris told Memphis’s CBS WREG station that he was working as a truck driver when wrestler Jerry “The King” Lawler suggested the character to him.
“Lawler saw me and said I have a good idea for you,” Harris said. “He put paint and clothes on me and they put a little dress on me. I love doing things like that. ”
Harris said the sport was good, but the money was not there and after increasingly sporadic appearances for another organization, he finally withdrew from wrestling for a good cause in 2010.
“People think I’m making millions of dollars because I wrestled with guys like Hogan,” Harris told The Tampa Bay Times last year. “It is not true.”
Harris eventually returned to truck driving until he suffered a series of health declines, losing both legs from diabetes in 2011. He is believed to have been given life support in the year. 2017 after a medical emergency.
“Kamala is one of the most reliable monsters in wrestling,” wrote Casanova. “He’s perfectly roleplayed, but also one of the most handsome guys you can meet.”
Others also paid homage to the gentle giant:
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