Beloved former WWE tag-team star and fan favourite Jim Neidhart has passed away aged 63.
A popular figure in the WWE during the late 1980s and early 1990s, Neidhart was best known as one half of the tag team the Hart Foundation.
Alongside tag-team partner Bret ‘The Hitman’ Hart, they twice won the WWE tag-team championships, and had a reputation as two of the most popular ‘Faces’ – essentially the good guys – in the organisation.
Neidhart had a genuine family bond to Bret too – he married the Hitman’s sister Ellie – and went on to team up with Owen Hart as a tag team in the mid-90s.
Born James Henry Neidhart in Florida in 1955, Neidhart made his wrestling debut in 1979 after training under the legendary Stu Hart – Bret and Owen’s dad.
He famously earned the nickname “The Anvil” after winning an anvil toss competition in impressive fashion during an event in Calgary.
Despite enjoying notable success as a tag team star, Neidhart never quite reached the same heights as a solo wrestler.
As the 90s progressed, his career became increasingly nomadic, taking in spells with the WCW and ECW.
More recently, personal problems saw The Anvil spend six months behind bars and go through two separate stints in rehab, paid for by WWE.
News of Neidhart’s death prompted an outpouring of emotion from the wrestling community with several notable names from the past and present of WWE taking to Twitter to pay tribute.
Sad to hear about the passing of Jim Neidhart. Condolences to his family, friends and fans. Jim was an important part of the landscape during one of the most important periods in the industry. RIP Jim,
— Eric Bischoff (@EBischoff) August 13, 2018
My Good Friend Jim Neidhart, A World Class Athlete And A Man Among Men. Rest In Peace. pic.twitter.com/JSmdpZ9YZ1
— Ric Flair® (@RicFlairNatrBoy) August 13, 2018
The only thing bigger than his on-screen character was his heart.
Jim “The Anvil” Neidhart loved performing with & spending time with his family…and he made us all smile while doing it.
Thinking of @NatbyNature, @TJWilson, & the entire Hart family during this difficult time. pic.twitter.com/ahWuWGXInv
— Triple H (@TripleH) August 13, 2018
If you couldn't like Jim "The Anvil" Neidhart your the one with the problem. You didn't to always agree with him but if this guy would give the shirt off his back. He was a tremendous athlete. Track and… https://t.co/M26hWaX4vc
— Gene Okerlund (@TheGeneOkerlund) August 13, 2018
I've worked with hundreds in the wrestling business. Jim "The Anvil" Neidhart was no doubt one of the most underrated of all time. Great wrestler, great entertainer, phenomenal human being. Thank you for all you did for us. pic.twitter.com/D8pU9WXJLU
— Vince Russo (@THEVinceRusso) August 13, 2018
ONE OF MY OLDEST FRIENDS IN THE BUSINESS JIM NEIDHART. WE TRAVEL TOGETHER I LOVE HIM FOREVER LIKE A BROTHER. GOD BLESS FAMILY I NEVER FORGET YOU BUBBA. pic.twitter.com/lt1dE8QOvt
— The Iron Sheik (@the_ironsheik) August 13, 2018
I’m heartbroken to hear of the sudden passing of my 30+ year friend, Jim Neidhart.
We met in the 80’s when Bill Watts booked ‘The Anvil’ in Mid South & Jim even coached Cowboy’s son Micah on how to shot put.
We lost a damn, good man. #RIPAnvil
— Jim Ross (@JRsBBQ) August 13, 2018
So sorry to hear about my buddy Jim Neidhart passing. My sympathies go out Nattie and the family. Gods Speed brother. RIP DDP
— Diamond Dallas Page (@RealDDP) August 13, 2018
Shocked and saddened to hear about the passing of Jim Neidhart. The #HartFoundation were the greatest of all time. My thoughts are with @NatbyNature @TJWilson and the rest of the Hart family. #RIPAnvil
— Sheamus (@WWESheamus) August 13, 2018
— TAZ (@OfficialTAZ) August 13, 2018
Devastating news Jim Neidhart my friend has passed away!! I can hardly believe it. Rest In Peace Brother until we meet again !!!
— Brutus Beefcake (@brutusbeefcake_) August 13, 2018
Oh Gosh! Just heard about The Anvil!! Sincere condolences go out to the Neidhart family. Such a sad day.
— Honky Tonk Man® (@OfficialHTM) August 13, 2018
He is survived by his three daughters Jennifer, Kristen and Natalie – the latter of whom competes as the wrestler Natalya in the WWE.
Loaded staff writer Jack Beresford has produced content for Lad Bible, Axonn Media and a variety of online sports and news media outlets.