Where Wrestling's Regional History Lives!
- Mike Norris
month I would like to take a look at the many tag teams that applied their
trade in the Gulf Coast promotion through the years. But before I do, I
need to make an addition to last month’s entry on prelim wrestlers. This
guy falls under the heading of one who was in the Gulf Coast early in his
career and went on to bigger and better things:
Ed Wiskowski –
“Easy” Ed was a mid-card heel who teamed some with Jerry “Duke”
Miller in the mid-70s. The biggest match he had in the area was a tag
match with he and Miller against
Billy and Benny, the McGuire twins. Wiskowski went on to fame and fortune
in the Pacific Northwest, and then as Colonel DeBeers in the AWA.
on to this month’s subject, I will cover from the late sixties until the
closing of the promotion. I may have discussed some of these teams in past
installments, so if I repeat myself, bear with me.
The Fields Brothers – You can’t talk about Gulf Coast wrestling
without talking about the three Fields Brothers. Lee, Don and Bobby all
made names for themselves throughout the wrestling business. Successful as
singles wrestlers and in various team combinations, the Fields boys
dominated wrestling in the southern part of the U.S., particularly the
Gulf Coast. They were of course, members of the famous Welch wrestling
clan (their dad, Virgil “Speedy” Hatfield married Bonnie Welch, sister
of Jack, Herb, Roy and Lester Welch). Lee and Bobby both held the Gulf
Coast championship as singles, and Don held the Alabama title. Bobby also
held the Louisiana title. Lee and Bobby held the Gulf Coast tag titles,
the United States tag titles, and the Florida version of the Southern tag
titles (as the masked Blue Infernos). Don and Bobby (as “Luke”
Fields) held the Tennessee versions of both the Southern and World tag
team titles. Lee bought the Gulf Coast promotion from his cousin Buddy
Fuller (Edward Welch) in 1959 and only wrestled sporadically after that.
Lee also dabbled in stock car racing and bought the Mobile International
Speedway in the mid-70s. Don’s career came to an end after a 1963 car
accident. He would help Lee with the promotion end and become a successful
rancher (the Fields Brothers ranch was near Loxley, Alabama).
Bobby went on to hold the Gulf Coast tag title with Ken Lucas and
with Cowboy Bob Kelly. He and Kelly would also hold the Mississippi tag
titles. Lee Fields passed away on June 4, 2000 after a battle with
leukemia. He was 69 years old. Bobby and Don Fields are retired and living
near Mobile, Alabama.