Many pro wrestlers have defined generations of pro wrestling over the years, especially when it comes to New Japan Pro Wrestling. One of them was certainly Osamu Kido. Therefore, it is with a heavy heart that we report that he has sadly passed away recently.
According to Nikkansports, Osamu Kido, known as Ibushi Gin during his tenure in New Japan Pro Wrestling, has passed away. The 73-year-old wrestler breathed his last at a hospital in Yokosuka, Kanagawa, just after 10 p.m. on the 11th. His sudden and severe deterioration in health on the same day required his swift transportation from his residence to the hospital, where he ultimately passed away.
It was reported that Osamu Kido had been grappling with cancer for several years, undergoing anti-cancer treatments to combat the illness. His daughter Ai Kido, a 33-year-old professional golfer with one tour win, will honor the family’s wishes by hosting a wake and funeral exclusively for immediate family members.
Osamu Kido began his professional wrestling journey by joining Japan Pro Wrestling in October 1968 and making his debut in February 1969. Later, he departed from Japan Pro Wrestling alongside Antonio Inoki and Tatsuji Fujinami, becoming a founding member of New Japan Pro Wrestling in March 1972.
His commitment to honing his skills led him to Germany for overseas training with Fujinami in June 1975, engaging in a rigorous eight-month war. Subsequently, he improved his wrestling techniques under the tutelage of the esteemed “God of Pro Wrestling,” Karl Gotch, in the United States.
Returning to Japan, Kido focused on refining his fighting prowess, emphasizing ground techniques and joint maneuvers. In 1984, he participated in the inaugural Universal Wrestling Federation. His wrestling journey saw him clinch the IWGP Tag Team Championship with Hiroaki Maeda in August 1986 upon his return to New Japan.
Concluding his illustrious 33-year career in November 2001 at the Yokohama Cultural Gymnasium, Kido continued contributing to New Japan as a coach. One of his notable trainees was Shinsuke Nakamura, who went on to become a prominent wrestler on his own. We offer our deepest condolences to Osamu Kido’s family and friends during this sad time.
What were your favorite Osamu Kido memories? Will you miss him? Share your condolences in the comments section below.