Hall of Fame pro wrestler Jimmy “Superfly” Snuka has died at the age of 73 after a battle with stomach cancer, Snuka’s daughter, Tamina, announced.
Snuka’s death comes just two weeks after murder charges against him were dropped. He was charged in September 2015 with third-degree murder and involuntary manslaughter in the 1983 death of his girlfriend, 23-year-old Nancy Argentino. Snuka’s lawyers had petitioned the court to drop the charges because he was suffering from dementia and given six months to live.
Argentino died after Snuka found her in an Allentown, Pa., motel room “gasping for air and oozing yellow fluid from her mouth and nose.” According to a 2013 investigation by the Allentown Morning Call, Snuka told at least five people at the time of Argentino’s death that he had shoved her earlier in the day and she hit her head. An autopsy revealed cuts and bruises that the coroner determined were consistent with “mate abuse” and a brain injury consistent with Argentino hitting her head against a stationary object. The Call’s investigation was partially responsible for the district attorney’s office reopening the case.
Snuka broke into WWF (later known as WWE) in 1982 and remained with the company until 1985. He spent the following five years wrestling in smaller promotions and returned to WWF in 1989. He was inducted into the promotion’s Hall of Fame in 1996 and made periodic appearances until 2014.