LOS ANGELES (UPI) — Ex-professional wrestler Matt Osborne, best known as the grease-painted Doink the Clown when he performed for the WWE, died Friday in Texas, TMZ.com reported.
Osborne, whose age was listed in various media as 55 or 56, died at his girlfriend’s apartment where he had been staying recently, the entertainment news website said. The cause of death and what city in Texas were not reported.
World Championship Wrestling, reacting to reports of Osborne’s death, issued a statement offering its “deepest condolences” to his family, friends and fans.
“A rugged brawler in promotions like Mid-South Wrestling and World Championship Wrestling, Osborne made a major impact in WWE under the greasepaint of a prankster named Doink — one of the most enduring personas of the early ’90s,” the WWE said.
QMI Agency reported Osborne was born in Oregon, where he followed in his father’s footsteps and got his start in wrestling, first in high school and then as a professional with Portland Wrestling. The Canadian news agency said he wrestled under various names, including “Maniac” Matt Borne and Big Josh, with a lumberjack persona.