Posted October 19th, 2012 by Bill Apter

It always hurts to write about someone dying. It hurts even more when you were friends with the person and shared lots of good times and creative business times as well. I had that kind of relationship with Mike Graham who has died.

I first met Mike back in the early 70′s when I reported and photographed the matches in Florida. Mike’s father Eddie was the promoter who made sure the “Sunshine State” was always booked with compelling wrestling that made it a hotbed of the sport.

Throughout the years I saw Mike go from rookie status to a mature athlete who honed his craft night-after-night and became a fine-tuned professional. Although he was small in size (5’8) he could grapple with opponents much larger than he and hold his own against them

Beside holding many Junior Heavyweight titles, Mike was also an expert tag team wrestler holding so many tag belts with several different partners.

Mike trained wrestlers, worked as a talent agent for the WWE, was a broadcaster, and so much more. He really was someone who did everything in pro wrestling.

I was pleased to work with Mike and several other Florida alumni in October 2011 to reminisce about the “good old days” for a DVD called “Greetings From The Sunshine State.” Mike was in his glory telling stories about his dad and all the talented workers who came through Florida.

Mike Graham was only 61 years old — much too young to die.

I’ll miss you my friend!–Bill Apter 10/19/12

Category: Wrestling.

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  1. By shari, posted

    what a great tribute to your friend Mike .. i’m sure he enjoyed talking with you and working with you, as much as you did with him. YOu will have many memories to treasure, and remember, your friend by. :)

  2. By anthony rivieccio, posted

    Will never forget championship wrestling from florida in 70′s

  3. By Vinny, posted

    The world has lost a great wrestler, but an even greater human bring, RIP, Mike Graham!

  4. By eddie, posted

    my best wishes to mikes family i grew up watching mike on cwf i always rooted for him against the bigger guys and he made me realize at my young age that size dont matter mike graham thanx for the memories as far as im concerned you are my top 3

  5. By sal "rough cuts" lasardo, posted

    i am sorry for the loss of your friend … my thoughts and prayers are with you … may GOD shine upon you and give the peace and strength to get through each and every day … 61 is way too young to die … but know he is in a better place and there is no more pain … he will be at eternal peace in the hands of the LORD …

  6. By Mike, posted

    Sorry to hear about the death of Mike Graham. I don’t know the details yet, because this was the first notice of it, but it’s still sad to hear, especially someone so young.
    Sorry for you loss, Bill, and also my condolences to his family & friends. A true wrestler like Mike Graham was a forgotten and underappreciated entity for so many years, until recently, when smaller guys have started to make a comeback into the spotlight.

  7. By Drakeo, posted

    He was 61? he didn’t even look it I thought he was 45 but it’s really sad to hear about his passing.

    It wasen’t even just mere days ago I was wacthing a couple of DVDs with him in it then I find out about this tragic turn of events.

    truly a tragedy…my deepest condolences to you Bill,his family and fans and the state of florida.

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