The man, the myth, the legend, Ric Flair has so many ridiculous stories that it’s hard to tell the difference between fact and fiction at this point. With the life he’s lived, even if something sounded too outrageous to be true, you could probably picture the Nature Boy doing it. (Got drunk and spent $40,000 on fur coats? Yep, that one’s true.) Flair has created a legacy that’s larger than life, giving him a repertoire of stories that shock and awe. We’ve been over some facts you might not know about the Nature Boy, but here are some crazy Ric Flair stories you probably haven’t heard…
Ric Flair was struck by lightning… twice.
In 1982, back in his NWA days, Ric Flair was the World Champion and heading to Richmond, Virginia to wrestle Ricky Steamboat in front of a sold-out crowd. Those turned out to be some of his most epic matches, but that’s not the point of this story. The weather was terrible and his flight was late getting out of Atlanta. It was raining so hard that they weren’t allowed off the plane because they’d have to walk to the gate. After the storm let up a bit, the crew handed them umbrellas and Ric Flair and the rest of the passengers were allowed off the plane. He says, “I didn’t go 10, 15 feet when all of a sudden I felt this pressure boom, and man, my umbrella shot 50 feet in the air.” Lighting hit the top of his umbrella, bounced off, and hit the guy five feet behind him, killing him. “Right there. I just stood there looking at the guy and froze, it scared me to death ”
The second time it happened, Flair was inside a plane. After his notorious plane crash in 1975, it’s a wonder he flies anymore at all. But this time he was on another small plane, a Seneca II, heading back from some Fourth of July festivities when lightning struck the plane and, he claims, they went upside down… but hey, not down.
He flashed everyone on a flight.
More than once. Yeah, The Nature Boy has a lot of stories that involve flying because, well, wrestlers travel a lot to perform across the country, but Flair and his buddies took the opportunity to make every flight a party. Fueled by alcohol and drugs, they’d often get a little silly as they zipped around the nation. Rumor has it that the Nature Boy would strut around the plane in his flamboyant, glittery robes wearing nothing underneath. Occasionally, according to his fellow partygoers, he’d also disrobe. Flair had no problem flashing the plane, its passengers, and sometimes even flight attendants.
On ESPN’s 30 for 30: The Nature Boy, they told a similar story. According to legend, on a flight to Portland, Oregon, Flair went into the airplane bathroom and came out in his dress socks, alligator shoes, and robe, yelling. “Woooo! How can you deal with this?” before flashing everybody.
According to long-time WWE commentator and then VP of talent relations, Jim Ross said, “The flight was about seven hours in length and at times was low-lighted by a handful of people who consumed too much alcohol and consequently acted like children whose parents were away and left the liquor cabinet unlocked.”
Flair partied so hard with the Four Horsemen that they killed a guy.
During Flair’s days with the Four Horsemen, they were known as the hardest-partying guys in wrestling. According to The Nature Boy, “We were hittin’ it hard, both in the ring and afterward!”
With women everywhere, Flair announced live on TV that he and the Horsemen were renting a suite at the Baltimore Marriott and any girls ages 18 to 28 were invited – no husbands or boyfriends allowed. He claims the lobby was packed and there had to be at least 300 women in the hotel room. So he just started doing that everywhere – Vegas, LA, Seattle, Frisco, all over – as they flew around the country in their private jet. They’d party until 8AM, wouldn’t sleep for days in a row, and Flair racked up $60,000 in limo rides one year.
But it was in Chicago where a poor limo driver died trying to keep up with their hard-partying lifestyle. No really, Flair wrote about it in his book. Between picking the guys up in the afternoon, driving them around all night, and dropping them off at eight in the morning, Flair says, “Poor Dave had been driving us around for three days when he had a heart attack and died in his sleep the day after we left town.”
Yeah, that really happened.
But you know what? However outrageous or debaucherous they might seem, these stories are fabulous. They’re part of Ric Flair’s aura, his charisma, his (dare we say?) charm. Without them, he wouldn’t be Ric Flair. Because really, who else can throw back 15 drinks a day and never miss a workout? These stories are just a testament to the man, the myth, and the greatest wrestler to ever live.
According to The Nature Boy, “ It was a tremendous life. I don’t regret any of it.”