JARRETT CARROLL/Recorder News Staff
Although not everyone lined up to get an autograph from William Alvin "Bill" Moody, they certainly seemed eager enough to have their photo taken with Paul Bearer and have him sign anything they had.
Fans were treated Saturday afternoon at the Professional Wrestling Hall of Fame and Museum in Amsterdam with a chance to meet the World Wrestling Entertainment star who has also gone by the ring names of Percival Pringle III and more notably Percy Pringle III.
However, spectators may have also known him as "Uncle Paul" and by other names given to him by pro wrestlers who he has managed throughout his career such as The Undertaker, Mankind, Rick Rude, and Steve Austin.
Carrying his trademark urn Paul Bearer was an integral part of the World Wrestling Federation story line before it was turned into the WWE, which he was incorporated into as well.
David Dragon of Glens Falls made the drive in order to get Paul Bearer's signature to add to his already hefty collection.
"I'm a really big fan," he said. "I've probably been down here for indications five or six times now."
Aside from the annual induction ceremony and shows put on by the PWHOF, Dragon said he goes to professional wrestling bouts whenever and wherever he can, including all over the Northeast.
As a fan, he said he loves the close central location that Amsterdam offers.
"They don't do as many signings as I would live, but when they do they always get great people to come down," Dragon said.
The ring name Paul Bearer is a play on words for pallbearer and in real life Moody did earn a degree in mortuary science and was a certified embalmer and funeral director. But unlike the somber, ghoulish personification Paul Bearer portrayed throughout his career, Moody was very laid back in person and was cracking jokes while singing posters, wrestling cards, and books.
"Come on up here, you won't get hurt," he told fans and curious spectators alike who filed into the PWHOF.
In addition to the singing there was a free hat and glove giveaway and the Amsterdam Police Department were processing free Child Watch identification cards.
Parents got laminated photo identification cards for their kids along with finger prints, which was something that Amsterdam Police Chief Gregory Culick was made possible by the PWHOF.
The hall of fame insignia could be seen on all of the ID cards.
"The Professional Wrestling Hall of Fame donated funds so we could buy the ID equipment so Detective Lieutenant Kurt Conroy told them we would like to show our gratitude by using the equipment at their next event," Culick said.
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