Longtime WWE ring announcer Finkel dies at 69

WWE Hall of Famer Howard Finkel has died at the age of 69.

The iconic ring announcer made his debut for the WWWF in 1977 and became its first full-time ring announcer in 1979. When the WWF was established in 1980, Finkel was its first — and longest-serving — employee.

His voice was heard time and time again on WWE broadcasts and pay-per-views until the 2000s — punctuating title changes with his signature “and nnnnnnnew …”

Finkel appeared at every WrestleMania from 1985 to 2016, which was the other well-known WrestleMania streak besides that of The Undertaker. Finkel transitioned into a backstage role once he was off-camera.

There was no cause of death provided by WWE.

He was not only a voice in the ring, but he also participated in gimmick matches from time to time, none more memorable than when he faced his “rival” Harvey Wippleman in a Tuxedo Match in 1995. Finkel won the match by keeping on his bow tie and cummerbund.

Finkel was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame in 2009.

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