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Wrestler 'Bam Bam Bigelow' crashes bike on SR 50

The former pro star was injured and is in Oak Hill Hospital. His passenger, a local woman, is in critical condition in a Tampa hospital.

By MICHAEL KRUSE
Published October 4, 2005

SPRING HILL - Former professional wrestler "Bam Bam Bigelow" crashed his Harley-Davidson motorcycle late Sunday afternoon on State Road 50.

Scott C. Bigelow, 44, whose address on the Florida Highway Patrol accident report is in Allenhurst, N.J., was in Oak Hill Hospital on Monday with injuries not considered life-threatening, FHP spokesman Larry Coggins said.

But the passenger who was riding on the back of the bike, Janis Remiesiewicz, 41, of Port Richey, was flown to Tampa General Hospital, where on Monday she was listed in critical condition, according to spokeswoman Ellen Fiss.

"He's going to live," Coggins said.

"She's in extremely critical condition."

The accident happened about 4:30 p.m. just east of Deltona Boulevard, according to the report. Bigelow was traveling east and tried to change from the outside lane to the inside lane, the report states. The motorcycle was the only vehicle involved. Neither Bigelow nor Remiesiewicz was wearing a helmet.

Charges against Bigelow are pending, Coggins said, adding: "If she dies, then it becomes a homicide investigation."

A call to the number listed at Bigelow's Allenhurst address went instead to an Ocean County, N.J., Enterprise rental car business.

Repeated calls to Remiesiewicz's home Monday afternoon and evening got nothing but a quick busy signal. Relatives did not return phone messages.

A spokesman at Oak Hill said Bigelow didn't want to talk.

It could not be learned what Bigelow was doing in Hernando County or how the woman knew Bigelow or what their relationship was.

As Bam Bam Bigelow, the big guy with the bald, tattooed scalp from hardscrabble Asbury Park, N.J., was a main-event, top-line guy for 15 years on various pro wrestling circuits and didn't totally retire until last winter.

The Wrestling Observer newsletter named him rookie of the year for all of pro wrestling in 1986.

He was considered a phenom at the time due to his extreme size - 6-foot-3, anywhere from 325 to 380 pounds - coupled with uncanny agility that allowed him to make acrobatic leaps from the ring's top rope onto his opponents.

"I remember when he first broke in," Wrestling Observer editor Dave Meltzer said Monday from his office in San Jose, Calif.

"We'd never seen anything like this guy."

According to obsessedwithwrestling.com and other pro wrestling Web sites, he had wrestled as Crusher Yurkof, Bruce Bigelow and Beast from the East before settling on Bam Bam.

His signature "finishing" moves were the head butt from the top rope and something he called "Greetings from Asbury."

Bigelow won the Southern heavyweight title in Memphis, Tenn., on July 28, 1986, and debuted in 1987 in the World Wrestling Federation. He eventually won titles in Extreme Championship Wrestling and World Championship Wrestling.

He wrestled with Hulk Hogan and Diamond Dallas Page.

He wrestled against Andre the Giant.

He wrestled in Japan and Moscow and was in the headliner match in WrestleMania XI in 1995 in Hartford, Conn., where he faced former NFL star Lawrence Taylor.

But back problems forced Bigelow to retire in November 2002.

He un-retired in December to come back and lose to someone named Abdullah the Butcher. He re-retired in July 2004. He un-retired again and last wrestled in November 2004.

After that, according to several wrestling Web sites, he opened up a place called Bam Bam's Burger Joint in Lake Ariel, Pa., which quickly went out of business, Meltzer heard through the grapevine.

Then he disappeared.

Fans on message boards wondered where he had gone.

He was spotted in Tampa early this summer, Meltzer said, but his last address in public records is Lake Ariel, and that ended this past April.

Then, on Sunday, near the intersection of SR 50 and Oregon Jay Road, he was on his 1998 Harley with Remiesiewicz, and Scott "Bam Bam" Bigelow tried to change lanes.

--Michael Kruse can be reached at mkruse@sptimes.com or 352 848-1434.

[Last modified October 4, 2005, 02:15:30]


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