The Death of Virgil

Professional wrestler Mike Jones, best known for his run in the World Wrestling Federation as “The Million Dollar Man” Ted DiBiase’s bodyguard Virgil died on February 28, 2024.

Mark Charles III, also known as The Count, initially broke the news of Jones’ passing through a Facebook post on Wednesday. The wrestling referee stated that Jones, who was recognized by various aliases, peacefully passed away at the hospital that morning at the age of 61.

Hailing from Wilkingsburg, PA, Jones began his wrestling career in 1985, gaining initial recognition in Verne Gagne’s American Wrestling Association as Soul Train Jones. During his time there, he clinched the AWA International Heavyweight Championship and the AWA Southern Tag Team Championship alongside Rocky Johnson, from Amherst, Nova Scotia, who is notably the father of Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson.

Transitioning to WWF in 1986, Jones was paired with DiBiase a year later. Dressed in his iconic sequined vest, Jones became DiBiase’s ringside ally, often wrestling those who were in conflict with DiBiase, with the condition that they needed to defeat Jones to earn a match with DiBiase. Eventually, after enduring increasing humiliations, Jones turned face in 1991 and engaged in a feud with DiBiase, culminating in his victory over him for the Million Dollar Championship at SummerSlam held in Madison Square Garden.

In 1996, Jones shifted to World Championship Wrestling (WCW), joining the New World Order stable under the moniker Vincent, where he once again teamed up with DiBiase. He remained with WCW for several years, adopting the persona of “Curly Bill” in 1999 as a member of the West Texas Rednecks, a faction known for their love of country music. Retiring from full-time competition in 2000, he pursued a career as a high-school math teacher.

Following retirement, Jones made occasional appearances across various wrestling promotions. Notably, he had a brief stint as the bodyguard of Ted DiBiase Jr. in World Wrestling Entertainment in 2010, and made appearances in All Elite Wrestling in 2019 and 2020.

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