WWE Icon Terry Funk Has Died at Age 79 Following a 50-Year Wrestling Career

Terry Funk is one of the most well-regarded wrestlers in history. Following the news of his death, many want to know what his cause of death was.


Aug. 24 2023, Published 10:36 a.m. ET

The Gist:

  • The death of WWE Wrestler Terry Funk was confirmed on Aug. 23, 2023.
  • No cause of death has been officially released, but it was reported in 2021 that Terry had been diagnosed with dementia.

Few wrestlers in the history of WWE have had more longevity or made a bigger impact on the sport of wrestling than Terry Funk. Terry's wrestling career lasted from 1965 all the way through until 2017, and following the news of his death at the age of 79, many wanted to learn more about the wrestling legend and his health.

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Terry's death was confirmed by several different sources on Aug. 23, 2023, including by Mick Foley, who was Terry's rival in the ring and one of his closest friends in real life.

“I just talked to Terry’s daughter, Brandee, who gave me the awful news,” Foley wrote in a tweet. “He was my mentor, my idol, one of the closest friends. He was the greatest wrestler I ever saw. If you get the chance, look up a Terry Funk match or a Terry Funk promo, and give thanks.”

What was Terry Funk's cause of death?

Following the news of Terry's death, many wrestling fans who remember watching him, or only heard about how great he was, wanted to know more about his cause of death. No cause of death has been officially released, but it was reported in 2021 that Terry had been diagnosed with dementia. It's unclear whether that was related to his death. The WWE also released a full obituary that confirmed Terry's passing.

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"Revered by fans and peers across the globe for his tenacity, heart and longevity, Funk will be remembered as one of the toughest competitors to ever step inside the squared circle," the obituary says. "From WWE to All Japan, from WCW to ECW, Funk proved he could go toe-to-toe with the best and pushed the limits of what was possible inside the squared circle."

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Was Terry Funk married?

Terry was married for more than 50 years. He married his wife Vicky Ann in 1965, the same year he made his debut as a professional wrestler. She died in 2019. The two spent many of their years together on a ranch in Texas, although that property was eventually sold.

Terry was the son of Texas wrestler and promoter Dory Funk, where he and his brother Dory Jr. grew up together working in professional wrestling.

Terry didn't make his WWE (then the WWF) debut until the mid-1980s, several decades into his career as a wrestler. It was there that Terry made a name for himself before eventually moving to World Championship Wrestling, where he had one of the most well-known matches of his career against Ric Flair.

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Did Terry Funk have any children?

During his marriage to Vicky Ann, Terry had two daughters, Stacy and Brandee. Not much is known about either of his daughters. Both of them have chosen to live their lives away from wrestling and largely out of the spotlight. It seems clear that they were close with their father, though, as they seem to have been the first people to spread the news that he had died.

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