Revolution Pro Wrestling has tweeted out a message announcing the death of English pro wrestling veteran, Mark “Rollerball” Rocco.

Rocco, who passed at age 69, was a featured competitor in companies like Joint Promotions, All Star Wrestling, and even in New Japan Pro Wrestling as the original Black Tiger. His family has been involved with the business for generations, as his father was British pro wrestler Jim Hussey and his son is boxer Jono “Rocco” Hussey.

Rocco was a regular on ITV’s World of Sport, a British television program that ran from January 1965 – September 1985. There he feuded with some of the best light heavyweights to emerge from the UK including Dynamite Kid, “Iron Fist” Clive Myers, and Marty Jones.

After his matches gained international attention, Rocco was recruited by New Japan Pro Wrestling to wrestle a series of matches against Satoru Sayama (“Sammy Lee” in Britain). This is when Rocco created his Black Tiger persona, and he went on to have some of the highest-rated pro wrestling matches in Japanese TV history.

Rocco continued on in the professional wrestling world until his retirement in 1991. He was forced to step away from the squared circle after an incident occurred where he lost consciousness after a match against Fit Finlay. This lead him to discover a heart condition that forced him away from competing in the ring.

WWE NXT UK stars have started taking to social media to post messages remembering Rocco’s impact on the industry. Sam Gradwell writes, “Really sad to hear about the passing of Mark Rocco, an innovator lightyears ahead of his time. Had the privilege of sitting with him & Marty Jones a few years ago & hearing them talk about their old battles, having subtle little digs at each other the entire time. Rest in peace.”

Mark Andrews posted a message as well, writing, “Awful news to hear of the passing of Mark Rocco. The modern style of wrestling wouldn’t be what it is today if it wasn’t for him. One of the best ever. RIP Rollerball.”

“Just heard about the passing of Mark Rocco,” Flash Morgan Webster posted. “Rollerball was without a doubt one of the very best to lace up a pair of boots. He was a pioneer and an innovator and its safe the Junior heavyweight style wouldn’t be what it is today without his contribution. An absolute legend.”

We here at Wrestling Inc. offer our condolences to Mark Rocco’s family and friends during this time.

Below are some of the matches from Rocco’s career:

You can see the full tweets below: