It was confirmed this week that former Canadian professional wrestler and long-time WWF road agent Rene Goulet died earlier this year.
Robert Bedard a.k.a. ‘Rene Goulet’ passed away on May 25th this year, although amazingly the news did not get out until now as Goulet had lost touch with many and it was kept quiet.
Bedard was born on July 12, 1932, in Quebec City and that is where he got his start in the profession in 1956.
He did an extensive interview with Stephen Laroche for SLAM Wrestling in 2001 and said his debut match was with Gerald Dugas, who replaced Maurice ‘Mad Dog’ Vachon that night. The first six years of his career were extremely limited match wise and didn’t wrestle regularly until 1963.
It was Vachon that recommended Bedard to Wally Karbo and the AWA, which brought the Canadian to the Minnesota-based territory and where he was first christened ‘Rene Goulet’.
He took on other names including Sgt. Jacques Goulet where he teamed with Don Fargo as The Legionnaires.
His first of several stays with the WWWF began in 1971 and it was during that run where he won the tag titles alongside Karl Gotch. The two defeated inaugural champions Luke Graham and Tarzan Tyler on December 6th.
They only held the titles until February 1, 1972, dropping them to Baron Mikel Scicluna and King Curtis Iaukea. In the interview with SLAM, Goulet said they were to keep them for a year but Gotch went to work with New Japan when they launched in March 1972.
Goulet toured around the world with stops in Germany and Australia in addition to the domestic territories he worked. He returned to the WWWF in 1979 and later the AWA where he worked with a young Hulk Hogan.
In 1977, while working with Georgia Championship Wrestling, he won their version of the tag titles with Ole Anderson on December 13th from Tony Atlas & Tommy Rich. It was another brief reign as they dropped them to Atlas & Mr. Wrestling II on February 7, 1978.
In 1981, he teamed with close friend Andre the Giant in New Japan’s MSG Tag League (the precursor to the current World Tag League tournament). The duo won the Tag League defeating Antonio Inoki and Tatsumi Fujinami in the final. The field featured Stan Hansen & Dick Murdoch, Tiger Toguchi & Killer Khan, Kengo Kimura & Seiji Sakaguchi, Rusher Kimura & Animal Hamaguchi, Allen Coage & Pat Patterson, The Wild Samoans, and El Canek & Super Maquina.
As the WWF was preparing to go national, Goulet was with the company as a wrestler and a road agent, retiring in 1984 from in-ring competition. He did return at the legends battle royal at The Meadowlands in New Jersey in 1987 that was won by Lou Thesz.
When the WWF launched Tuesday Night Titans, Goulet was provided an interview segment called ‘Café Rene’, which was later handed off to Rene Dupree in 2004 when he had a short-lived segment on SmackDown called ‘Café de Rene’.
Goulet was often spotted on WWF television during pull apart segments as an official from the back.
He finished with the WWF in 1997 and had retired in North Carolina. He was inducted into the George Tragos/Lou Thesz Professional Wrestling Hall of Fame in 2010.
Goulet was 86 at the time of his passing and survived by his wife Pierrette, daughter Johanne, and sister Suzanne.
The following obituary was posted for Goulet:
With heavy hearts, at the age of 86, we announce the death of Robert Bedard (Indian Trail, North Carolina), who passed away on May 25, 2019. Family and friends are welcome to leave their condolences on this memorial page and share them with the family.
He was loved and cherished by many people including: his parents, Ulric Bedard and Stella Arcand; his wife Pierrette; his daughter Johanne; his sister Suzanne. He was also cherished by many nieces and nephews.
In lieu of flowers family requests donations to the Charlotte Alzheimer’s Association 4600 Park Road Suite 250 Charlotte, NC 28209.
Suggested donation : Alzheimer’s Association