Today we’re hearing some sad news out of the WWE camp. Longtime WWE announcer Howard Finkel has passed away. The news was first posted via the WWE’s social media with an accompanying announcement.
WWE is saddened to learn that WWE Hall of Famer Howard Finkel has passed away at age 69. https://t.co/tqmD68ZsQp
— WWE (@WWE) April 16, 2020
WWE is saddened to learn that Howard Finkel has passed away at age 69.
When considering the greatest ring announcers in the history of sports and sports-entertainment, you’d be hard-pressed to name one better than Howard Finkel. A native of Newark, NJ, “The Fink” — a label that had been attached affectionately to Howard over the years — made his ring announcing debut at Madison Square Garden in 1977 for WWE’s predecessor, WWWF.
By 1979, Finkel was the full-time ring announcer for WWWF, and when WWE was established in 1980, The Fink became the first — and eventually longest-serving — employee. Finkel’s distinctive voice was instantly recognizable, and for more than two decades Superstars such as The Ultimate Warrior, “Stone Cold” Steve Austin and more would have a title victory marked by The Fink’s signature call, “and NNNEEEWWW World Champion!”
Despite being a ring announcer, Finkel didn’t shy away from in-ring competition in certain circumstances. In 1995, he battled his longtime rival Harvey Wippleman in a Tuxedo Match on Raw, and later helped X-Pac shave Jeff Jarrett’s head in a Hair vs. Hair Match at SummerSlam 1998.
In addition to his legendary tenure as a ring announcer, The Fink was an indispensable resource inside the WWE offices for his vast knowledge of sports-entertainment history. Well respected by current Superstars, WWE Legends and Hall of Famers, Finkel’s encyclopedic memory and kindness made him beloved among his colleagues. The Fink was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame on April 4, 2009.
WWE extends its condolences to Finkel’s family, friends and fans.
Finkel was reportedly dealing with serious health issues in recent years.
Since then, many superstars from the past and present have commented on this horrible news.
Howard Finkle was on Team Hogan through the good and bad times,even when I was on the outs Howard would call on a consistent basis to tell me to always keep my head up,it was” never say never” and “you and Vince will work it out”,my good friend RIP,I love you 4LifeHH
— Hulk Hogan (@HulkHogan) April 16, 2020
Fink was not only an indelible part of my childhood but he couldn’t have been sweeter to me any time I saw him backstage. I’m grateful to have known him.
— Florida Man (@WWEBigE) April 16, 2020
I lost my friend today
I saw him once a month
The Voice of Wrestling
I loved him so much
The Fink pic.twitter.com/EOWmADTkjO
— Tommy Dreamer (@THETOMMYDREAMER) April 16, 2020
Dammit, this is a another kick in the gut. ?? Rest Easy Fink! One of the greatest and most recognizable voices in history. Loved this dude. Everyone did. https://t.co/MklOpTCacu
— Hurricane Helms (@ShaneHelmsCom) April 16, 2020
I’m gonna dearly miss my friend @howardfinkel. Passionate Mets & wrestling fan. An incredible soul. He’s the soundtrack to so many of our childhoods. Nobody has ever done it better. Rest In Peace Fink.
— Brian Myers (@TheCurtHawkins) April 16, 2020
Howard Finkel was a great friend and mentor to me. I was so blessed to be able to look to him for guidance, honesty and the occasional bit of humor. He spoke with kindness, and always had a sparkle in his eye when speaking about our industry. Thank you for everything Howard. ?
— The Brandalorian (@TheBrandiRhodes) April 16, 2020
Sad beyond words. I loved this man. There'll never be another like him. The 1st person to befriend me when I went to work at WWE. Introduced me to the Dairy Queen Blizzard while driving with his feet and smoking Swisher Sweets. I love you Howard, more than you'll ever know. pic.twitter.com/bIQILxEFbl
— Vince Russo (@THEVinceRusso) April 16, 2020
I’m saddened to hear of the passing of someone which most of us remember as The Voice of WWE, Howard Finkle. He was the nicest guy in the business & more importantly, My Friend. Rest in piece Fink. ?? #Godspeed… https://t.co/VT2XFSQCkJ
— Chavo Guerrero jr. (@mexwarrior) April 16, 2020
I'm absolutely gutted over the passing of Howard Finkel. Another voice of my childhood has been silenced. Such a sweet, sweet man. I'll miss our conversations about wrestling and Rock N Roll. This ABSOLUTELY sucks. Love ya Fink! pic.twitter.com/eAX0cOktda
— Brian Heffron aka The Blue Meanie (@BlueMeanieBWO) April 16, 2020
In what has already been a tough week for our @WWE family, today we lost our 1st ever employee and WWE Hall of Famer, @howardfinkel. Howard’s voice is iconic & recognized by generations of fans. He will be missed. #RIPHowardFinkel Thank you for everything. ❤️?❤️
— Stephanie McMahon (@StephMcMahon) April 16, 2020
Howard was the best. It’s that simple. I’ll never forget the last few times I saw him…the excitement he still had for the industry, the genuine concern he showed when asking about how my family was doing despite his own declining health…
I’m so grateful I got to know him. https://t.co/sALmt2Ihb6
— Kevin (@FightOwensFight) April 16, 2020
So sad to hear of the passing of my friend, the greatest ring announcer in the biz, Howard Finkel, at the age of 69.
The Hall of Famer is now ring announcing in Heaven. #RIPFink
No one was more loyal or loved pro wrestling more than The Fink. ?
— Jim Ross (@JRsBBQ) April 16, 2020
— CommentaryKingWWE (@WWEDramaKing) April 16, 2020