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'Bruiser' Bob Sweetan dies at 76 years old

"Bruiser" Bob Sweetan, known as Mr. Piledriver as the babyface star of Southwest Championship Wrestling and rival of Tully Blanchard during the company's 1982-83 run on the USA Network, died on February 10th.

Sweetan, born Robert Beier, was a noted tough guy, who was also very much of a bully, and a loner. He had largely disappeared from contact with most in wrestling and was known after wrestling for sexually abusing his daughter.

He was 76 years old.

Sweetan was mostly a mid-level promotion star, in places like Central States, where he headlined for years, as well as for Leroy McGuirk's Tri-States Wrestling, Stampede Wrestling, and Southwest Championship Wrestling. He headlined in all those territories, as well as a headline run for Roy Shire at the Cow Palace as a two time U.S. champion when he was using Kansas City talent and Sweetan was the top heel.

He started his career in 1965 with Stampede Wrestling and his career ended in 1985 when he simply stopped showing up for work and disappeared from his family as well, moving in with a new woman, when he was working for Mid South Wrestling as a top heel, feuding with Ted DiBiase and Jake Roberts, and teaming with Steve "Dr. Death" Williams.

In 1990, police found him and arrested him for sexually abusing his daughter when she was 15, as well as nonpayment of child support. He pleaded guilty to the sexual abuse. In 2000, when he stopped checking in with police, they found him and deported him to Canada, where he lived the past 16 years.

He also worked under the name K.O. Cox. He had a regular tag team at one time with a brother, Fred Sweetan, whose real name was Fred Prosser.

His most famous run in San Antonio, because of the national exposure, was an anomaly, since he was an ugly brawling heel most of his career. But during his biggest exposure he played the part of the blue collar brawler type from nearby Round Rock, TX, going against Blanchard, who played the role of a young rich playboy type.

Greg Oliver of Slam Wrestling first reported his death.