Orly Pepper

Orly Pepper

Modified & Updated: 09 Sep 2023

Source: Onlineworldofwrestling.com

Dusty Rhodes, born Virgil Riley Runnels Jr., was a legendary professional wrestler and one of the most iconic figures in the history of the sport. With his charismatic personality, unique in-ring style, and undeniable promotional skills, Rhodes became a beloved fan favorite and a true icon in the world of professional wrestling.

Throughout his career, Dusty Rhodes achieved remarkable success, both as an in-ring competitor and as a creative force behind the scenes. His influence extended beyond wrestling, as he became a cultural phenomenon and a symbol of rebellion and resilience.

In this article, we will delve into 13 fascinating facts about Dusty Rhodes, shedding light on his remarkable career, his impact on the industry, and the legacy he left behind.

Table of Contents

Dusty Rhodes was a legendary professional wrestler.

Dusty Rhodes, also known as “The American Dream,” was a prominent figure in the world of professional wrestling. His charismatic personality and unique ring style made him a fan favorite and a household name.

He was known for his iconic “Bionic Elbow” move.

Dusty Rhodes had a signature move called the “Bionic Elbow,” where he would hit his opponents with a powerful elbow strike. This move became synonymous with Rhodes and was a crowd-pleaser during his matches.

Dusty Rhodes was born on October 12, 1945.

He was born Virgil Riley Runnels Jr. in Austin, Texas. Rhodes grew up in a wrestling family, with his father and two brothers also being involved in the business.

He started his wrestling career in the 1960s.

Rhodes began his professional wrestling journey in the 1960s, working for various regional wrestling promotions. He quickly gained recognition for his skills and larger-than-life personality.

Dusty Rhodes competed in multiple wrestling organizations.

Rhodes wrestled for several wrestling promotions throughout his career, including the National Wrestling Alliance (NWA), World Championship Wrestling (WCW), and the World Wrestling Federation (WWF, now known as WWE).

He was a three-time NWA World Heavyweight Champion.

Rhodes held the prestigious NWA World Heavyweight Championship three times, solidifying his status as one of the greatest wrestlers of his era. He had memorable feuds and epic matches during his championship reigns.

Dusty Rhodes was a skilled entertainer on the microphone.

In addition to his wrestling abilities, Rhodes was known for his exceptional mic skills. He could captivate the audience with his passionate promos and engaging storytelling, leaving a lasting impression on fans.

He was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame in 2007.

Recognizing his contributions to the industry, Dusty Rhodes was rightfully honored with his induction into the WWE Hall of Fame in It was a well-deserved recognition of his impact on professional wrestling.

He wrestled his final match in 2006.

Rhodes had his last official match on August 17, 2006, teaming up with his sons, Cody Rhodes and Dustin Rhodes, in a tag team match. It was a memorable moment for both Dusty and his family.

Dusty Rhodes became a respected trainer and mentor.

After retiring from in-ring competition, Rhodes took on the role of trainer and mentor for aspiring wrestlers. Many current wrestling stars credit him for shaping their careers and providing valuable guidance.

He was known for his colorful and flashy ring attire.

Dusty Rhodes had a unique sense of style when it came to his wrestling gear. His flamboyant costumes, often adorned with sequins and vibrant colors, added to his larger-than-life persona inside the squared circle.

Dusty Rhodes passed away on June 11, 2015.

The wrestling world mourned the loss of Dusty Rhodes when he passed away in His legacy continues to live on, inspiring future generations of wrestlers to follow in his footsteps.

He had a deep connection with his fans.

Dusty Rhodes had a special bond with his fans, known as the “Rhodes Scholars.” He appreciated their support throughout his career and always made an effort to connect with them on a personal level.


In conclusion, Dusty Rhodes was an iconic figure in the world of professional wrestling. From his humble beginnings to becoming a legendary wrestler, he had a significant impact on the industry. With his charismatic personality, unique wrestling style, and memorable catchphrases, Dusty Rhodes will always be remembered as one of the greatest wrestlers of all time.


1. What was Dusty Rhodes’ real name?
Dusty Rhodes’ real name was Virgil Riley Runnels Jr.

2. When did Dusty Rhodes start his wrestling career?
Dusty Rhodes started his wrestling career in the late 1960s.

3. Was Dusty Rhodes a champion?
Yes, Dusty Rhodes was a multiple-time champion in various wrestling promotions.

4. What was Dusty Rhodes’ signature move?
Dusty Rhodes was known for his signature move, the “Bionic Elbow.” It was a powerful elbow strike that became his trademark in the ring.

5. Did Dusty Rhodes ever compete in other promotions?
Yes, Dusty Rhodes competed in various wrestling promotions throughout his career, including WWE, WCW, and NWA.

6. Was Dusty Rhodes known for his promos?
Absolutely! Dusty Rhodes was a master of cutting captivating and entertaining promos, which became a defining aspect of his character.

7. Did Dusty Rhodes have any children who also pursued wrestling careers?
Yes, Dusty Rhodes had two sons, Cody Rhodes and Dustin Rhodes, who followed in their father’s footsteps and became successful wrestlers themselves.

8. What was Dusty Rhodes’ most memorable match?
One of Dusty Rhodes’ most memorable matches was the “Hard Times” match against Ric Flair for the NWA World Heavyweight Championship in 1985.

9. How did Dusty Rhodes get the nickname “The American Dream”?
Dusty Rhodes adopted the nickname “The American Dream” to represent his persona as a common man who rose to greatness and represented the hopes and dreams of the working class.

10. Did Dusty Rhodes contribute to the wrestling industry beyond being a wrestler?
Yes, Dusty Rhodes also worked as a booker, creative consultant, and trainer, helping to shape the future of professional wrestling.

11. Did Dusty Rhodes ever retire from wrestling?
Dusty Rhodes officially retired from active in-ring competition in 2007. However, he continued to make occasional appearances and contribute to the industry.

12. What were some of Dusty Rhodes’ notable achievements?
Some of Dusty Rhodes’ notable achievements include winning multiple world championships, being inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame, and creating innovative and memorable storylines.

13. What was Dusty Rhodes’ legacy in professional wrestling?
Dusty Rhodes’ legacy in professional wrestling is immense. He paved the way for future generations of wrestlers, left a lasting impact on the industry, and will forever be remembered as a true legend.