Former wrestling star Doink The Clown has been found dead at the age of 56. The body of the retired grappler, real name Matt Osborne, was reportedly discovered by his girlfriend in her Texas home on Friday (28Jun13), although further details surrounding his passing were unavailable as WENN went to press.
Bosses at the World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) organisation have paid tribute to the star in a statement which reads: "Reports indicate that Matt Osborne, aka the original Doink the Clown, has passed away. A rugged brawler in promotions like Mid-South Wrestling and World Championship Wrestling, Osborne made a major impact in WWE under the greasepaint of a prankster named Doink - one of the most enduring personas of the early '90s.
"WWE is saddened by the news of Osborne's passing. Our deepest condolences go out to Osborne's family, friends and fans."
Born in Charlotte, North Carolina, the sportsman followed his dad, 'Tough' Tony Borne, into the ring and made his wrestling debut at a regional contest in 1978. He began to make a name for himself in World Class Championship Wrestling bouts and fights for World Championship Wrestling, but it wasn't until 1992 that he signed with the World Wrestling Federation (WWF) and took on the persona of the villainous clown.
With full face paint and a green wig, he became known for his tricks and pranks on fellow fighters and famously poured a bucket of water over rival Bobby Heenan at a Raw event in 1993. He was also recognised for his long-running feud with Brian 'Crush' Adams.
Osborne, who previously struggled with substance abuse, left the WWF in 1993. He would have celebrated his 57th birthday on 27 July (13).