Dec 19, 2009 - by Steve Gerweck



Real name: Leon White
Height: 6’5″
Weight: 456 lbs.
Date of birth: May 14, 1955
Date of death: June 18, 2018
From: Denver, CO
Pro debut: 1985
Trained by: Brad Rheingans
Finishing move: Vader Bomb


– Vader competed as “Bull Power” Leon White in the AWA.
– On December 25, 1986, White, Greg Gagne, and Scott Hall beat Larry Zbysko, Mr. Saito, and Super Ninja in St. Paul, MN.
– On March 22, 1987, White defeated Otto Wanz for the CWA (Catch Wrestling Alliance) title in Denver, CO.
– White was transformed into Big Van Vader in New Japan Pro Wrestling.
– On December 27, 1987, Big Van Vader defeated Antonio Inoki.
– On April 24, 1989, Vader won a one night tournament in Tokyo, Japan to claim the IWGP (International Wrestling Grand Prix) Heavyweight title.
– In August 1989, Vader again defeated Otto Wanz, this time in Vienna, Austria, for the CWA title.
– Big Van Vader defeated Riki Choshu on August 10, 1989 to regain the IWGP title.
– On November 22, 1989, Big Van Vader defeated El Canek in Mexico City, Mexico to capture the UWA Heavyweight title.
– In July 1990, White joined World Championship Wrestling.
– On December 22, 1990, White defeated Mark Rambo to win the vacant title CWA title in Bremen, Germany.
– Big Van Vader defeated Tatsumi Fujinami on January 17, 1991 in Yokohama, Japan to claim his third IWGP title.
– On March 1, 1992, Big Van Vader and Bam Bam Bigelow defeated Hiroshi Hase and Keijo Muto for the IWGP Tag Team title.
– At Starrcade ’91, Big Van Vader and Mr. Hughes beat Rick Steiner and the Nightstalker.
– On March 21, 1992, Big Van Vader and Bigelow defeated Doom in Tokyo, Japan.
– At the 1992 Great American Bash in Albany, GA, Big Van Vader defeated Sting to capture the WCW title.
– Big Van Vader downed Nikita Koloff at the 1992 Halloween Havoc.
– On December 30, 1992, Big Van Vader downed Ron Simmons in Baltimore, MD to regain the WCW title.
– At Superbrawl III, Big Van Vader defeated Sting in a “Leather Strap” Match.
– Big Van Vader defeated Sting on March 17, 1993 in Dublin, Ireland to become a three time WCW champion.
– At Halloween Havoc ’93, Vader won a “texas death” match over Cactus Jack.
– On August 18, 1994, Vader defeated Nobuhiko Takada to capture UWFI (Union of Wrestling Force International) title in Tokyo.
– At Starrcade ’94, Vader pinned Hacksaw Jim Duggan for the WCW United States title in Nashville, TN.
– Vader wrestled in his final WCW match in August 1995. He was fired after having a backstage brawl with Paul Orndorff.
– Vader joined the World Wrestling Federation in January 1996.
– At Wrestlemania XII, Vader, Owen Hart and Davey Boy Smith defeated Jake Roberts, Ahmed Johnson and Yokozuna.
– At the 1997 Royal Rumble, Vader defeated The Undertaker.
– In late 1998, the WWF allowed Vader out of his contract, and White signed with All Japan Pro Wrestling.
– On March 6, 1999, Vader pinned Akira Taue for the vacant All Japan Triple Crown title.
– Vader defeated Kenta Kobashi to win the 1999 Champion Carnival on April 16, 1999.
– Vader defeated Mitsuharu Misawa on October 30, 1999 to regain the Triple Crown title.
– On October 18, 2001, Vader and Too Cold Scorpio defeated Jun Akiyama and Akitoshi Saito for the Pro Wrestling NOAH GHC Tag Team Championship.
– Vader made a surprise appearance on the February 19, 2003 NWA TNA PPV.
– In early 2004, White signed a six match deal with Pride worth $400,000.
– On December 5, 2004 in Tokyo, Vader defeated Kohei Suwama.
– On April 2, 2016, Vader inducted Stan Hansen into the WWE hall of fame in Dallas, TX.
– On April 1, 2022, Vader was inducted into the WWE hall of fame.

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