Thursday, April 07, 2016

Lord James Blears

[4/7/16]  Signature wrestling moves such as the Oxford leg strangle and Ferris wheel finish initially brought Lord James “Tally Ho” Blears to Hawaii, but it was a booming British-accented voice rich in character that made him a household name here for 60 years.

The charismatic Blears provided the colorful soundtrack for the heyday of pro wrestling in the state in the 1960s and ’70s and went on to become “the voice of surfing” and water sports for another 30 years.

His remarkable life, which ended last month at age 92, will be celebrated in a memorial service Saturday at 11 a.m. at Makaha Beach.

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[3/8/16] James Blears, a legendary wrestling champion, local promoter and World War II survivor who was nearly killed by his Japanese captors, has died.

Blears died of natural causes Thursday night at Kuakini Medical Center, his son Clinton Blears said. He was 92.

“He lived a good life,” Clinton Blears said. “He always told jokes. He gave us the gift of being able to tell stories because he was a story- and a joke teller.”

Blears, a professional wrestler known as Lord “Tally-Ho” Blears, told the Honolulu Star-Bulletin in 2001 that he would eat a can of peaches every March 29 in homage to his fellow captives who perished and to remind himself of the preciousness of life and resilience. He said he ate peaches because it was the first food sailors gave him after they plucked him from the Indian Ocean, following his escape from his Japanese captors in 1944.

Blears was a 21-year-old radio officer on a Dutch merchant ship that had been sunk by a Japanese submarine near the end of World War II. The Japanese brought aboard the survivors and were shooting or decapitating many on the foredeck. Blears said he escaped by kicking a Japanese officer and pulling his hand out of a rope, then jumping overboard.

In Hawaii, Blears was an announcer for multiple sporting competitions including the Waikiki Rough Water Swim and the Quiksilver in Memory of Eddie Aikau big-wave surf contest. He was also a skilled waterman, surfer and canoe paddler. He is the father of former professional surfer Laura Blears.

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Lord James "Tallyho" Blears 92, passed March 3rd. Born in the United Kingdom. 1923-2016.

WRESTLER/ WATER- MAN/SPORTS ANNOUNCER

Joined the Service and endured, survived WWII War Atrocities, then became a Professional Big Time Wrestler. Lord and his wife Lee retired and lived in Makaha where they enjoyed living amongst the wonderful people of The West Side of Oahu. Lord Tallyho Blears, will be missed. " ALOHA & TALLYHO! "

Lord is survived by daughters, Carol & Laura, son; Clinton, Grandsons; Dylan & Zach and Great Grand Daughter, Ka'imino'eau Gwenna-Leigh Ching.

A MEMORIAL SERVICE WILL BE HELD AT MAKAHA BEACH ON SATURDAY, APRIL 9TH, 2016 AT 11:00am. FRIENDS ARE INVITED TO CELEBRATE AND SHARE MEMORIES OF HIS LIFE. Info: Clinton 808 224-7321.

*** [4/6/16] Mufi remembers 50th State Wrestling (page 24)

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