Villano III Has Passed Away

Villano III
Villano III

The world of Lucha Libre has lost a legend today. Villano III, real name Arturo Díaz Mendoza, passed away today at 66 years old. His death is believed to have been from a cerebral infarction.

“Villano III, one of the greatest stars of LLI (UWA), has passed away today.”

Villano III’s career began in the 1970s for the Universal Wrestling Association. His older brothers had already been wrestling professionally for a few years and his father, Ray Mendoza, had been a successful luchador already in his career. He leaves behind two sons, who wrestle as Villano’s IV and V.

“Villano III has passed away, the son of the late Ray Mendoza, and one of the biggest Lucha Libre performers of the past four decades.”

Villano III

In 2000, Villano III won the Wrestling Observer’s prestigious Match of the Year award for his bout versus Atlantis in Mexico City. His retirement match in 2015, however, earned Worst Match Of The Year as well. This was on the ill-fated TripleMania show which suffered from numerous production glitches.

Villano III won the WWC heavyweight championship on two occasions in Puerto Rico. He won the CMLL world light heavyweight championship once as well. Along with his sons, he held the AAA America’s Trios Championships twice.