Former WWE Wrestler Virgil Passes Away at 61

Pro wrestling legend, Michael Jones, who was best known as “Virgil” in WWE and “Vincent” in WCW during the 1980s and ’90s, has passed away at the age of 61.

The news was first announced by Jones friend and wrestling referee, Mark “The Count” Charles III, who wrote:

“My dear friends, it is with great sorrow that I bring news from the Jones family of the passing of our beloved Michael Jones, whom we know and loved as Virgil, Vincent, Soul Train Jones and more. Virgil passed peacefully at the hospital this morning and I ask that you pray for him and for his family. May his memory be eternal!”

Jones was a successful amateur wrestler before making his pro debut as “Soul Train” Jones in 1985. He signed with WWE (then WWF) in 1987 and quickly became a staple of our television screens portraying the character of “Virgil” — the long-suffering assistant and bodyguard to the “The Million Dollar Man” Ted DiBiase. That iconic role saw him and DiBiase help Andre “The Giant” to win the world championship from Hulk Hogan in 1988, when “The Million Dollar Man” paid off the referee’s twin brother to screw “The Hulkster” out of his title. That match drew an incredible 33 million television viewers and Jones was further immortalized on classic video arcade games such as “WWF Superstars” in 1989. In 1991, Virgil finally turned against DiBiase and became a fan favorite, defeating his former boss at SummerSlam 1991 and winning the coveted “Million Dollar Championship” in the process.

Wrestler millian dollar man ted debiase andre the giant and virgil posing

Jones was also a part of the famous pro wrestling “Monday Night Wars”, signing with WCW in 1996 as the “Head of Security” for the red-hot NWO faction. He was renamed to “Vincent” however, in a move by WCW that was said to mock WWE’s then owner, Vince McMahon. While Jones left WCW in the year 2000, he was a mainstay at fan conventions and autograph signings, and built-up a following on Twitter/X , for his humour and often controversial remarks, referring to himself in jest as “The Meatsauce God.”

It is understood that in recent years, Jones had been suffering with a number of serious health issues including battling several strokes, and being diagnosed with both dementia and colon cancer.

An array of stars from the worlds of showbiz and pro wrestling have paid tribute to Jones including 80s icon, “The Honky Tonk Man,” who took to X to pay his respects. “Condolences go out to the family of Virgil,” he wrote. “Such a great guy. A real gentleman. Will miss you my friend!” Rest in Peace Michael Jones 1982 – 2024.


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