Pittsburgh’s Keystone State Wrestling Alliance (KSWA) will induct five new members into its Hall of Fame on Saturday, November 4, at the Mt. Washington Recreation Center.
The eclectic group includes “The Beast” Ken Cerminara, “Mad Dog” Tony Lutz, (posthumously) Geeto Mongol, “Irish” Red Walsh and T.C. Reynolds. After this weekend’s ceremony, the now 16-year-old Hall of Fame will be made up of 51 members.
“This is awesome. You guys really do a great job remembering the older guys,” said T.C. Reynolds, 66, of Butler, PA.
The KSWA Hall of Fame ceremony is limited to Pittsburgh-area talent who have made impressive contributions to the Western Pennsylvania scene, but also includes those like eastern Pennsylvania resident Bill Apter, whose contributions can’t be overlooked despite the Pittsburgh/Philadelphia rivalry.
Cerminara, Walsh and Reynolds were all trained by the famed WIIC, Channel 11 TV Studio Wrestling legend Geeto Mongol in his fabled Butler County property. Under Geeto’s influence, the guys were all able to find television time in WWF tapings in the early-to-mid 1980’s.
Lutz never wrestled “for Vince” but grappled on the local scene for several years, largely for fundraising events in the city’s southern neighborhoods, like Mt. Washington. To this very day, Lutz, who for much of his in-ring career resembled “The Dog Faced Gremlin” Rick Steiner, is a popular, retired athlete.
Cerminara had one of the longer careers and came out of retirement in 2021 at age 67 to participate in a match, “just so I can say I wrestled in six decades,” he said. Cerminara, who is battling non-Hodgkin lymphoma, said he “forgot all about the cancer” when he was notified of this year’s induction.
Reynolds wrestled alongside longtime friend Preston Steele (KSWA Hall of Fame Class 2019) as “The American Patriots” and a variety of other gimmicks, but admittedly made most of his money as one of the many incarnations of “The Prince of Pranks” Doink. “Lord Zoltan (Ken Jugan) and I wrestled many times over the years,” Reynolds said recently. “Those two characters really clicked.”
Reynolds said that he once wrestled in a battle royal where all 13 participants were in Doink regalia. “Including a guy with a cigar and a painted, paper suit.”
Jugan (KSWA Hall of Fame Class 2012) recently congratulated all of the inductees and wrote in a Facebook post that he and Reynolds “made the most money” wrestling each other. Jugan was credited by the living members of this year’s class of Hall of Famers for helping them with bookings along the way. Some, like Cerminara, were also frequent travel partners, a routine that got him heat with Geeto. “I took him to his first show as Caveman Ogg,” Jugan wrote. “He didn’t like that.”
Walsh, who will turn 70 in a few days, wrestled the likes of Ken Patera and “Big” John Studd during his short WWF run, continued to wrestle independent shows in the Pittsburgh region. Lutz is personal friends with “Irish” and calls him “the real star.”
Geeto Mongol wrestled as both a heel and babyface and scored tag team gold during the height of Pittsburgh’s famed Studio Wrestling, which ran from 1958-1974. He trained many Western Pennsylvania talents of the day, including Bill Eadie (KSWA Hall of Fame Class of 2009) before spending his final days in Virginia. Mongol, born Newton Tattrie, passed away a decade ago, in July 2013.
TOP PHOTOS: Left, Geeto Mongol, photo by Steven Johnson; top middle, T.C. Reynolds; bottom middle, Mad Dog Lutz; right, “The Beast” Ken Cerminara