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Leo Burke

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Leo Burke

Real name: Leonce Cormier

The most prominent of the Cormier wrestling family from Atlantic Canada, which included his big brothers The Beast (Yvan Cormier) and Rudy Kay (Jean-Louis Cormier), and little brother Bobby Kay (Romeo Cormier).

Small, but tough. Very successful in Nova Scotia and Calgary, and held the top belt in Puerto Rico in 1989. In Toronto, he had a prolonged feud against Johnny Weaver in 1982-83.

One of Leo's biggest feuds in Calgary was against a young Bret Hart in 1980. They later became tag champions in 1982. In the 1990s, Burke was training young wrestlers in Alberta -- often with Bret Hart.

All of the Cormiers held numerous titles in Nova Scotia.

"Leo Burke was on the threshold of winning the world heavyweight wrestling championship last night at the Halifax Forum before close to 4,000 admiring fans in his match with the reigning champion Terry Funk. Burke punished Funk for the greater part of the match which ended at the 55 minute 35 second mark when Funk, apparently in an effort to save his title and belt, hurled Burke over the top rope and thereby brought disqualification upon himself. The championship cannot be lost on disqualification. (From the Halifax newspaper, Sept. 8, 1976)

Prominent Titles:

  • 4-time North American champion (Nova Scotia), 1971-77
  • 2-time Stampede International tag champion, with Keith Hart, 1977, 79
  • 2-time Stampede International tag champion, with Bobby Burke, 1977, 80
  • 8-time Stampede North American champion, 1978-83
  • Commonwealth champion (New Zealand), 1979
  • Stampede International tag champion, with Bret Hart, 1982
  • 2-time North American champion (Toronto), 1982-84
  • Stampede International tag champion, with Ron Ritchie, 1986
  • WWC Universal champion (Puerto Rico), 1989
  • WWC Caribbean champion, 1990

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