John J Bonica aka Johnny Bull Walker

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latif
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John J Bonica aka Johnny Bull Walker

Post by latif » Fri Nov 24, 2017 4:05 am

Hello all

I'm a journalist and historian doing research on the doctor John J Bonica (1917-1994), who also wrestled professionally under the names Joe Bueka, Johnny Bull Walker, and the Masked Marvel. I'm looking for any and all information and/or original sources about Bonica's wrestling career (lasted from approximately 1936 to about the early 50s).

Here's what I already know:
Over the course of his time as a wrestler, Bonica wrestled many of the greats including Angelo Savoldi, Jim Londos, the Duseks, Ed The Strangler Lewis, and Lou Thesz. He also worked as a carnival strongman for a few seasons with the AT show circuit. In 1939, he won the light heavyweight championship of Canada, and on June 22, 1941, he won the NWA Light Heavyweight Championship of the World belt from Jesse James in Binghamton, NY.

Here's what I'm on the lookout for:
- Any original sources (photos, articles, posters, etc) that relate to Bonica
- Any information about his career in general or any of his matches or training style in particular
- Any recommendations of a person or book or article who could help give me A broader portrait of what pro wrestling was like at that time (in particular what the physical demands on a wrestler of that era would have been)

Thanks so much for your help all!

sticksb
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Re: John J Bonica aka Johnny Bull Walker

Post by sticksb » Fri Nov 24, 2017 11:33 pm

IMG_0006.jpg
IMG_0006.jpg (76.51 KiB) Viewed 4957 times
From Google images . Good contrast photo .

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David Gentle
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Re: John J Bonica aka Johnny Bull Walker

Post by David Gentle » Mon Nov 27, 2017 2:06 pm

Hi By the names of his apponents, he obviously worked on the American circuit. I assume you have books like The Fall Guys or Graeme Kents books, recently there has been an encyclopedia of wrestling, admittedly mostly the modern rubbish from USA, but also some classics like Thesz and Ed Lewis, the latter by the way what we call a real shooter not as most are ie. "Workers" as a matter of interest i have seen Savoldi and London at the end of their careers when they worked for Dales. its an interesting subject according to your beliefs. I will take a look in my library. by the way , you could ask the same question on the superb wrestling site. www.britishwrestlersreunion.com they have some good historians. David Gentle
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DannyBoy
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Re: John J Bonica aka Johnny Bull Walker

Post by DannyBoy » Tue Nov 28, 2017 12:05 pm

Welcome to the HOPC forum, latif!

I'm familiar with Dr. John Bonica, but I don't know too much about him. I can tell you that in addition to the aforementioned greats like Lou Thesz, Jim Londos, Ed "Strangler" Lewis, Rudy Dusek, Angelo Savoldi & Jesse James, Bonica also wrestled the likes of Baron Michele Leone, Bobby Bruns, Milo Steinborn, Mighty Atlas, "Hebrew Hercules" Abe Coleman, Ted Christy, Chief Little Wolf, Frank Scarpa, "Slammin'" Sammy Menacker & Babe Sharkey.

Since it's John Bonica's pro wrestling career you're specifically interested in, I'd like to direct you to the WrestlingClassics.com Message Board (http://wrestlingclassics.com/.ubb/ultimatebb.php). There's many professional wrestling historians who are members there and it's probably the place where you'll be able to obtain the most information in regards to Bonica's wrestling career. I hope you find what you're looking for. :)

latif
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Re: John J Bonica aka Johnny Bull Walker

Post by latif » Sun Dec 03, 2017 8:22 pm

Great. Thanks so much both of you. Out of curiosity, Dannyboy, how do you know he wrestled all those folks?
And thanks esp for the links. Will go post on those other forums! Thanks!
Latif

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DannyBoy
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Re: John J Bonica aka Johnny Bull Walker

Post by DannyBoy » Sun Dec 10, 2017 8:46 pm

latif wrote:Great. Thanks so much both of you. Out of curiosity, Dannyboy, how do you know he wrestled all those folks?
And thanks esp for the links. Will go post on those other forums! Thanks!
Latif
Sorry for taking so long to reply back to you Latif, I haven't been on here in a few days.

To answer your question; I've seen match results for John Bonica at Wrestlingdata.com. Wrestlingdata is a great database & information resource that I've used for years. The match results & such for any given wrestler aren't necessarily complete, but it's a good way to see who [insert wrestler's name here] wrestled, when, where, what championship may have been on the line and so on & so forth. There's more match results for John Bonica on the website than just against the guys I mentioned, I only listed some of the bigger &/or more notable wrestlers he wrestled. Wrestlingdata has 150 match results for Dr. John Bonica, so just search for him on the website and you can look through them.

I hope your research into Bonica's pro wrestling career is going well. :)

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