“The Patriot” Del Wilkes Passes Away

Del Wilkes, best known for his time in WWE as “The Patriot” has died aged 59. It has been reported that Del Wilkes cause of death was from a heart attack.

Wilkes made his debut in the wrestling world in 1988 for promotion AWA. He has also competed around the world in promotions WCW, All Japan, WWE and more. Wrestling fans will best know Del Wilkes for his portrayal of the character “The Patriot” in WWE [WWF at the time] in 1997-1998. The Patriot was a masked wrestler who would come to the ring with a mask decorated with the American flag, along with carrying the flag of the United States.

His most prominent feud was against Bret Hart, who was the WWF Champion at the time. Hart was the leader of The Hart Foundation when the group was promoting themselves as Anti-American. The Patriot picked up victories against The British Bulldog and Hart himself, eventually earning a WWF Championship opportunity. Bret Hart put his title on the line against The Patriot and the In Your House event Ground Zero. At the pay per view, Bret Hart defeated The patriot by submission.

Del Wilkes was forced to retire due to a torn triceps injury. During his wrestling career, Wilkes was a 4 time tag team champion, North American Champion and Television Champion across various promotions.

Tributes have been posted online to send their condolences to the family and friends of Del Wilkes. William Regal has said the following:

Features of Wrestling would like to send their condolences to the family and friends of Del Wilkes during this difficult time.

Featured image: WWE

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s