Missouri Wrestling Revival has supported pro wrestling for the past eight years and during that time we have traveled through the beautiful state of Iowa to meet the wonderful fans. While covering some of the biggest matches of this era on the independent scene that would include the likes of Tyler Black (Seth Rollins) Davey Richards, Adam Pearce and not one, but two Iron Man matches between Jeremy Wyatt and Mark Sterling.
On this night, I would be traveling to Nevada, Iowa , a town just outside of Des Moines the home base for 3XWrestling as an invite from my longtime friend 3XW fan Brian Vanderwal . Several months prior to the event Brian had Facebooked myself to ask if I could free my schedule to attend a memorial show that he was working with 3XW to honor the memory of his longtime friend Jeff Thompson. Due to the fact that it was Mothers Day and I had hoped to take my mother to Kansas City for the spring race of NASCAR event at Kansas Speedway for the Spongebob Squarepants 400, yet we would not be able to do so as she works at a nursing home for the past 35 years and was unable to get off, so I contacted my friend Brian to let him know the week prior that I would be there, and look forward to supporting his effort to make the Jeff Thompson Memorial Show a success.
To be honest, I can’t say that I had known Jeff, but it was obvious that he had touched many of those in the wrestling community by the kind words that many of the wrestlers had to say about him. I had written a press release on the pain that a mother/fathers have when they lose a child. Jeff a longtime wrestling fan ,made his way to cheer on the Nevada, Iowa girls basketball team on March 7th to win their first ever state basketball tournament . On the way out of the building Jeff collapsed and passed away due to a brain aneurysm on the way out of the arena that night. I did not know Jeff’s mother, Deb and had hoped that it was appropriate for the occasion, but Brian had told me that she had loved it and when we met prior to the event she had given me a hug to start off a memorable night in Iowa.
While meeting with his Dad, Ken, he and I exchanged stories of him traveling through Missouri, only to have a flat tire, and receiving help from a Missourian that had not asked for payment. We spoke about NASCAR and most importantly we talked about Jeff. Ken was impressed in the fact how Jeff had touched so many in the wrestling and Heavy Metal music community. While we spoke friends, family and fans of pro wrestling started to fill up, Ken told me the story that summed up how powerful a mother can be to their child as he explained how Jeff’s first spoken word were “mom” and on that tragic day that Jeff would pass away, his mother Deb was there and Jeff’s last words were “mom”.
Headlining the evenings events were a tag team tournament to crown the first ever 3XW Jeff Thompson Memorial tournament featuring four exciting tag teams including the former MWR Tag Team of the Year the American Bulldogs ( Mark McDowell and Jon West) , the exciting tag team AC/DC of Arik Cannon and Darin Corbin as well as the former fan favorite tag team of Heroes for Hire (Jimmy Rockwell and Zach Thompson) in opposite corners as Rockwell teamed up with the 3XWrestling Champion Jeremy Wyatt while Thompson aligned himself with Wyatts arch rival Mark Sterling.
Also on the card were several 3XWrestling favorites, as well as students from the 3XWrestling school and The Black & The Brave Wrestling Academy to thrill the fans with a night of exciting wrestling. Prior to bell time, Brian Vanderwal and his girlfriend were working the concession stand
while 3XW’s Corrie McDowell at the merchandise table offering raffle tickets to the fans for a chance to win wrestling merchandise as the fans had an opportunity to meet the tag team AC/DC, SM King and Nevada’s very own Don Desher.
Prior to the event 3XW’s Todd Countryman thanked the crowd for attending the show in Jeff Thompson’s memory expressing to them how blessed that 3XW had felt having the support of Jeff throughout the years.
The action started out fast and furious as Sentai and Pat Powers hoped to use speed to slowdown the powerful SM King.
In the end, Sentai took home the win in front of a rockin’ crowd.
In the first round Mark Sterling and Zach Thompson took advantage of the miscommunication of the American Bulldogs to move on past the first round of the Jeff Thompson Memorial tournament.
Once again the Bulldogs seemed to have animosity between each other after the loss, leaving many wondering if this was the last of the Bulldogs for good.
Up next, Skylar Pierce and power of JD Riggs would be too much for the young Rich Brooks to overcome in match number two as the big man keeps rolling in 3XW.
The second match in the Jeff Thompson Memorial tournament went back and forth as Wyatt and Rockwell struggled to keep up with the tag team excellence of AC/DC. Wyatt and Rockwell captured a hard fought victory to move on into the finals of the tournament to be featured in the main event later that evening.
During the intermission, we got to see a softer side of one of the baddest men in the Midwest, “The Rebel” Jeremy Wyatt when they offered Ken and Deb’s grandson Jackson an autograph poster of the nights event in the middle of the ring.
As they say kids say and do the darndest things, and on this night was no different. As Rockwell and Wyatt was in the ring Todd Countryman asked young Jackson if he was would like to challenge one of the tag team winners to a contest, the boy declined, but much to Countrymans’ dismay Jackson wanted a match with Todd.
WWE’S Bo Dallas would be proud of Jackson because once he got out of the ring he made a victory lap clapping fans hands along the way.
Devin Carter has been one of the best wrestlers at 3XW for some time and Nevada’s own Don Desher hoped to take the cheers of the hometown crowd on the way to victory.
Carter, a wily and dangerous challenger stopped Desher momentum at every turn only to have Desher capture the biggest victory of his young career forcing Carter to tap out to the sharpshooter as the crowd exploded.
Straight out of the Black and Brave Wrestling Academy, Adrian Alexander found himself across the ring against former 3XWrestling Champion Rory Fox.
I have to believe that Fox is one of the most underrated wrestlers in the Midwest, and the fact that Alexander not only stood his ground, but was able to show signs of getting a win early in his first months of wrestling before falling to losing to Fox. proves to me that we should see a lot of the young star to come.
The always charismatic Brady A Dezire was dressed for the occasion as he had his cow style pants, but it would be the cowboy “The Lone Star” Jesse Malone who would be right at home in the country style pavilion capturing a huge win.
A classic battle royal was held next as the 3XW stars battled it out, until it was Bulldog partners Mark McDowell and Jon West. On this night Maddog McDowell would have the crowd rockin’ as he was able to turn the tide of West and dump him onto the floor to become the last man standing.
The finals of the tournament was set as four men who have been to battle with and against each other throughout the years battle for the bragging rights of being named the first ever Jeff Thompson Memorial Tag Team Champions.
Sterling and Thompson were vicious and unforgiving in their attack of Rockwell and Wyatt. Sterling delivered the power moves as Thompson used his speed to their teams’ advantage early on. It would be back and forth as both teams looked to gain an advantage, but it would be a leg drop from Wyatt sealing the victory for their team.
Moments later Todd Countryman invited Brian Vanderwal in the ring to present the Jeff Thompson Memorial trophy to the team of Jeremy Wyatt and Zach Thompson. It was then decided between Vanderwal, Wyatt and Rockwell that Jeff Thompsons mother and father should come into the squared circle to be given the trophy in Jeff Thompson’s honor.
As Jeff’s mom and dad, Deb and Ken were handed the trophy by the winners of the tournament, Vanderwal and several of the young family members came into the ring to celebrate, I realized that I had experienced a truly magical moment at 3XW.