Eddie Guerrero was Much More than Just a WWE Superstar

In the early 2000s, Eddie Guerrero was one of the most beloved wrestlers in WWE. After paying his dues in Japan, Mexico and WWE’s rival, World Championship Wrestling, Guerrero eventually became WWE Champion in 2004. Not bad for a kid from El Paso, Texas. Along with grapplers such as Chris Benoit, Chris Jericho and Rey Mysterio, Guerrero proved that smaller-sized wrestlers could become superstars. In 2005, at the height of his popularity, Guerrero died of a heart attack. He was only 38. Although he became a superstar in WWE, his early career is packed with fun facts:

Eddie’s father, Gory Guerrero, was a lucha libre legend. For many years, Gory was the tag team partner of El Santo, the most iconic luchador in Mexican history.

Credit: rocknwrestling.tumblr.com

That’s El Santo shaking hands with Gory. Later in his career, Gory “turned” on El Santo and became one of his biggest rivals.

Early in his career, Eddie Guerrero wrestled in Japan under a mask. His name was “Black Tiger.”

Credit: New Japan / Legit Puroresu / YouTube

When Guerrero left Japan to wrestle in Mexico, he switched to a different mask. Guerrero became “Máscara Mágica.”

Credit: pwa.wrestlingx.net

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But Guerrero wasn’t happy wearing the mask. So he made history as one of the few luchadores to unmask himself.

Credit: Rob Viper / YouTube

In lucha libre, your mask is sacred. It’s considered humiliating to lose your mask to an opponent. But Guerrero said he was tired of hiding under a mask. He felt it was more important to let fans know he was carrying on the legacy of his father, Gory.

Eddie eventually became the tag team partner of El Hijo del Santo.

Credit: cronicasyleyendasdelaluchalibre.com

They became one of Mexico’s most popular tag teams in the ’90s. But just like his father, Eddie turned on El Hijo del Santo and became his nemesis.

Eddie then teamed up with “Love Machine” Art Barr to form the anti-Mexican tag team Los Gringos Locos.


Yep, the same guy who eventually became known as “Latino Heat” is slapping away a Mexican flag in that GIF. Aside from wearing the US flag all over their bodies, Los Gringos Locos also chanted “USA, USA” and insulted Mexicans any chance they got. Naturally, they became the “rudo” tag team Mexicans loved to hate.

The “Frog Splash,” Eddie signature move…


Was inspired by his partner in Los Gringos Locos.


The frog splash was originally the signature move of his partner Art Barr, who died in 1994. Eddie began doing the move to play tribute to his friend.

Guerrero had been wrestling professionally for nearly two decades before he won the WWE Championship in 2004.

Credit: The Hellraiser / Wikimedia

Guerrero made his pro debut in 1987. For years, WWE was dominated by large, powerful wrestlers such as Hulk Hogan, The Undertaker and Brock Lesnar. So when he and friend Chris Benoit – both of them were under six feet tall – won title belts at Wrestlemania XX, they met together at the center of the ring for an emotional celebration.

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Chicano History Makes History in this Instagram Account


Chicano History Makes History in this Instagram Account

CREDIT: @veteranas_and_rucas / INSTAGRAM

When Guadalupe Rosales started  the Instagram account “Veteranas and Rucas” it was meant to be a sort of archive for Southern California Chicano Life in the 1990s. It started off as a way to connect with people she lost contact with after she moved to New York. But after a while, the account took on a life of its own.

Veterana and Ruca

“‘Veterana’ means someone who has put in work or time in the gang culture, and ‘ruca’ is what you call your chick,” she told LA Weekly. “If you know these words, you can connect with me and the West Coast.”


And lots of people knew what she was talking about. As of now, the account has 25,000 followers. People are constantly visiting the page and posting their own pictures. Some are dedicating posts to loved ones they’ve lost and others are even finding relatives they’ve never met. Rosales herself, connected with her long lost best friend.

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Preserving History

“I’ve had teens who are curious about their parents, who wonder how their parents met or knew their parents were from this gang or party crew, but they never experienced it,” Rosales says. “They’re learning history and at the same time trying to save and preserve it.”

The World is Taking Note

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#Inglewood 90-91 WS RAZA X3 TLS #Califas #RaidersNation

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What’s shocking to Rosales is that this life is not really chronicled anywhere. There are no archives helping preserve this side of history. So she contacted UCLA’s Chicano Studies Research Center and she will now be exhibiting photos, films and flyers from this time. Because, as Rosales says, “So many of us were part of it that it’s kind of like, ‘How could it not be important?’”

Read more about Chicano life in the 90s here.

Check out more pics from @veteranas_and_rucas here.

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