Skip to main content

Buddy Wayne passes away at 50 years old


Buddy Wayne, who was one of the first regular guests on the Figure Four and Wrestling Observer website, a veteran Pacific Northwest wrestler who trained and wrestled Bryan Alvarez probably on a regular basis for decades, passed away on Friday at the age of 50.

Wayne, who was born Steve Finley in Everett, Washington, suffered a sudden heart attack. It came out of nowhere as he was fine and talking with former WWE wrestler Antonio Thomas on the phone shortly before his death.

Because of the name Buddy Wayne, he was sometimes confused with the Memphis Buddy Wayne, Dwayne Peale, who passed away in 2015 and was the father of Ken Wayne.

Wayne started his career as a teenager in 1985 for All-Star Wrestling in Vancouver, along with current Showtime and Bellator fight announcer Mauro Ranallo, who was a heel manager with the promotion as a teenager.

Considered a great worker, a combination of his size and the death of the territorial system kept him from becoming a bigger star. He worked most of his career in the Pacific Northwest, holding a number of championships in smaller promotions, including Championship Wrestling USA, which was Sandy Barr's promotion that ran the territory in the 90s.

Wayne had major heart surgery at a young age.

He worked many enhancement matches in the 90s, through 2003, for both WWF and WCW, including with the likes of Bam Bam Bigelow, Edge, Scott Hall, and Shawn Michaels.

Alvarez talked about him extensively at the start of last night's Wrestling Observer Radio and there will be more shows this week with others who had worked with him over the years.

He had been running the Buddy Wayne School of Wrestling and was very well respected as a trainer.