While Tonga Fifita is known to wrestling fans as either Haku or Meng, to Johnson, he is Uncle Tonga. Johnson's grandfather, WWE Hall of Famer High Chief Peter Maivia, helped train Fifita to become a professional wrestler in the 1970s.
Johnson shared a story on Instagram of borrowing a pair of purple trunks from Haku for his tryout match with WWE, which was also his first-ever wrestling match (he faced The Brooklyn Brawler in a dark match on March 10, 1996 at a Superstars taping in Corpus Christi, Texas).
Merry Christmas Uncle Tonga - enjoy your new truck! Cool Christmas story to share with y'all... Known my "Uncle Tonga" since I was 5yrs old. My grandfather, High Chief Peter Maivia helped train him to become a professional wrestler in the 70's. Throughout Tonga's illustrious wrestling career he changed his name to "King Haku" and became one the WWE's most sought after "bad guys" and still known to this day for being one of the toughest and legit most vicious man in wrestling history.
Years later and I get a call from WWE saying "Vince McMahon wants to see you wrestle immediately. He's flying you to RAW tomorrow and you'll have a tryout match." I thought holy s--t that's awesome, buuuut there's a few problems: For me, I wasn't just having "a tryout match", because I had never actually HAD a real match in my life. Ever. WWE thought that I already had multiple matches under my belt, but little did they know. What they also didn't know was that I was broke as hell and didn't actually own wrestling gear - no boots, knee pads or most importantly.. wrestling trunks. I went to Sports Authority and bought some bright ass white volleyball knee pads, called my Uncle and asked if he had ANY trunks I could use for my tryout. He said all I have is a pair of shiny purple trunks (purple was his signature color), I told him I don't care if the trunks are all the colors of Skittles, I'll happily wear them. When I picked the trunks up from him I'll never forget the monster hug he gave me, look me in the eyes and said, "I'm so proud of you. Go get 'em nephew!" Here's the picture of me wrestling my FIRST MATCH EVER in Corpus Christi, TX in front of 15,000 people - proudly in my lucky purple trunks. And the rest... was history.
My Uncle Tonga is a family man, humble man and champion. Most importantly one of the greatest human beings I know. So we walk outside and I said "Uncle how do you like my truck?" He said, "Whoooaaa nephew it's beautiful... I love it!" I said "Good 'cause it's yours." He was speechless. Thru tears (manly of course;) we monster hugged 'cause I'll never forget what he did for me when I had nothing. Merry Christmas Uncle and ofa atu. #LuckyPurpleTrunks