On a recent Friday night in the Harahan Community Center, the master of ceremonies had the capacity crowd’s attention. “This here,” he promised, “this tonight is gonna be some old-school professional wrestling.” All of us cheered. “Some of you may remember– folks my age, a little younger– the kind of old-school wrestling New Orleans was famous for. I’m talking about a certain Bill Watts. I’m talking about the Junkyard Dog.”
Some jumped to their feet, howling in approval. “Junkyard Dog!” they shouted. Most just clapped politely. When I spoke to people outside during the show’s intermission, no-one younger than forty had much to say about Junkyard Dog. Of the younger attendees, a few knew he was from here, but to the majority he was just another name, a minor figure from the distant days of Hulk Hogan.
Thirty years ago, Junkyard Dog was a New Orleans demigod.
Rami Chami, a graduate student entering Tulane University, was among those who sought refuge in the Superdome. Chami was formerly an editor at the Indiana Daily Student, and has written a three-part series for the paper about the experience.
"The field before us, which would have been ideal to lay down on was empty, but off bounds. The field was manned by National Guardsmen who would not allow people on it. I was told by those around me that it was a multi-million dollar field which the stadium management did not want ruined."
"Our first choices for a bed that evening were: a wet floor, damp chair or in the reeking but dry hallway."
"The atmosphere in the dome had gotten incredibly tense and the soldiers were walking around with shotguns, which I assumed was an ideal weapon for close quarter combat."
posted by kyleg
on Sep 9, 2005 -
"They killed a man here last night." Stories of rapes, murders, and suicides are emerging from survivors of the "shelter" of the Superdome. From a National Guard soldier: "We found a young girl raped and killed in the bathroom. Then the crowd got the man and they beat him to death."
posted by cerebus19
on Sep 4, 2005 -