Real Name - Rolando Hernández Verástegui
Lifespan - 2/1/15 - 3/29/01
??? - Monterrey, Nuevo León, Mexico
Aliases - El Spirit
Athletic background - Wrestling
Teachers - Joe Stanley
Peak Years - 1950s
Place in History - Pro-wrestling has always had the legendary tough guy trainers; men who had legitimate amateur wrestling skills and knowledge of dangerous hooks. After pro-wrestling began changing as a true contest, there remained this link to the past. Anywhere that pro-wrestling was a big deal, there was always an old-timer who could really hurt people and they often became the best teachers for aspiring pro-wrestlers. In Mexico, Rolando Vera is the man with this role. Although there were probably better and certainly more proven maestros, Vera had a particular reputation as arguably the toughest. Legend has it Raúl Romero took advantage of Vera in a match when he was building a name for himself in Monterrey. He was a talented amateur and the embarassment was bruised his ego enough to go abroad to learn the art of hooking. He returned with his knowledge and challenged Romero, who he did not humiliate so as not to expose Romero to his students. After that, Vera's career went onward and upward as lucha libre boomed in Mexico. He was one of the premier stars of the day, holding the NWA World Middleweight Championship for four years when it was the top title in Mexico. Vera was one of the biggest stars of the time, however he began training luchadors as well and that is where he really became renowned. Vera produced two of the top luchadors of all-time - Blue Demon and René Guajardo. He frequently teamed with Demon as well as the legendary El Santo, whom he defeated for the Middleweight belt. After dropping the belt to Guajardo, Vera concentrated more on his local market of Monterrey. He was the biggest star from the area and helped cultivate the city into one of the premier regions for lucha libre. Rolando Vera is one of the great stars of lucha libre's first boom era as well as one of the toughest men in Mexican wrestling history.