Kerry and the Cheeseburger

OK, these are the times I wish I had still had a comprehensive FAQ to call up, but it seems like there’s quite a few people who don’t know the infamous story with Kerry and the cheeseburger, so I thought I’d do a quick history this morning to clear up some of the jokes in the Observer recaps.

First up, people have asked what exactly was the deal with his Kerry’s prosthetic foot?  Basically he was in a pretty horrific motorcycle accident in 1986, driving too fast on a dark road, and he plowed into the back of a cop car and essentially destroyed his foot in the process, along with some other less serious injuries.  His foot was crushed under the wreckage of the bike and was essentially dead at the ankle, but doctors did a Hail Mary miracle surgery on it and reattached it using bones from other places in his body and some other cutting edge stuff.  However, even if it worked perfectly, there was still only a very slim chance, like less than 5%, that he would regain use of the foot again.  He was supposed to be out for 18 months, but Fritz pushed him (and pushed him and pushed him) into returning in six, before the foot had fully healed enough to even walk on it without crutches.  He was supposed to make his big return against Brian Adias at the end of the year, so Fritz pumped him full of what were basically horse tranquillisers until his poor son could put forth the illusion of walking without pain, and he did the match with Adias.  It was mostly Kerry standing still and Brian bumping off him, but even in that limited capacity the painkillers wore off midway through the match and Kerry was apparently in AGONIZING pain instantly, and he returned to the hospital immediately after the match and in super-double-secret surgery, had the foot amputated.  From there he received the fake foot and proceeded to disguise it for the next two years, never removing the boot in public places or telling anyone outside of the family about the foot, until an AWA TV taping in 1988 where Col DeBeers accidentally pulled the boot off during a match, revealing Kerry’s stump.  Fritz somehow managed to cover THAT up, putting the “news” into the deep freeze to the point where it remained an urban legend until Kerry’s death in 1993, when suddenly everyone found out about the foot.

Now, the cheeseburger story is a bit of lore that came around during the time when the “wrestling sleaze” list was a big thing, and it’s basically a funny story to explain the loss of his foot.  The story goes that after the Adias match, Kerry went to the hospital and the foot would have been fine with rest, but he was loaded on painkillers and one of his brothers was eating fast food in the hospital room, and Kerry suddenly had a craving for a cheeseburger and decided to get up and walk across the room in his drugged state to get one.  Since he couldn’t feel pain, he didn’t realize the damage he had done to his foot, and so they amputated it.  This one has been debunked several times since it came about, but it’s much funnier than the sad real reason, so obviously it’s got the staying power.