|Birth name||Jimmy Lee Banks|
|Born||May 14, 1956|
Akron, Ohio, United States
|Died||July 27, 1982(aged 26)|
|Professional wrestling career|
Sugar Bear Brown
|Billed height||6 ft 4 in (1.93 m)|
|Billed weight||330 lb (150 kg)|
|Trained by||Johnny Powers|
Jimmy Lee Banks (May 14, 1956 – July 27, 1982) was an American professional wrestler, best known by his ring name Kasavubu, who competed in Stampede Wrestling and well known in the World Wide Wrestling Federation as Jojo Andrews. One of the top "heels" in Stampede in the late-1970s, his career was short lived as he suddenly died of a heart attack.
Banks started wrestling in 1975 at the age of 19 for Big Time Wrestling in Detroit. He was trained by Canadian wrestler Johnny Powers.
World Wide Wrestling Federation
In 1976, Banks made his WWWF debut under the name Jojo Andrews. During his first stint, he wrestled Andre the Giant, Ivan Putski, Dominic DeNucci, Bobo Brazil, and Bob Backlund. In 1977, he would leave the WWWF to fight in the independents and Stampede Wrestling in Calgary.
In 1979, he returned to the WWWF, this time the name was changed to WWF World Wrestling Federation. He lost to Larry Zbyszko, Tito Santana, Pat Patterson and Tony Atlas. In 1980 he left the company.
Banks wrestled in Stu Hart's Stampede Wrestling in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, where he became well known in his career as Kasavubu billed from Uganda. He was managed by J.R. Foley. At first he wrestled under the name Tiger Jackson, until changing his name to Kasavubu. He feuded with Leo Burke, John Quinn, Hubert Gallant, and Keith Hart. The peak of his career was when he defeated Paddy Ryan for Stampede North American Heavyweight Championship on September 22, 1978. He dropped the title to Alo Leilani on November 12. After the title loss, Kasavubu returned to the WWF.
In 1980, after a nearly two-year hiatus, he returned after leaving the World Wrestling Federation. He teamed up with the Dynamite Kid winning the Stampede Wrestling International Tag Team Championship by defeating the Hart Family on June 3. Three weeks later they dropped the titles backed to the Harts. Later that year he teamed up with Mr. Sakurada and defeated the Harts for the tag teams titles before dropping them to Jim Neidhart and Hercules Ayala. He went on to feud with Hercules Ayala and Bret Hart.
Banks was forced to leave Stampede Wrestling due to diabetes-related health problems. At one point, Banks had been using a dialysis machine in between matches. He returned to the U.S. to receive a kidney transplant from his brother. On July 27, 1982, Banks had a heart attack as he was on the operation table. He was 26 years old. That summer, a memorial show was held in Banks' hometown to raise money for his family. Wrestlers from five states appeared at the event including, most notably, Tom Lynch, Brady Howard, Larry Winters, Marcial Bovee, The North American Madman, Ed Bonzo, Malcolm Monroe and Zoltan the Great.
Championships and accomplishments
- Professional Promotions
- Professional Promotions Central Championship (1 time)
- Ohio Championship Wrestling
- OCW Tag Team Championship (1 time) – with B.B. Coleman
- Stampede Wrestling
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- Hart, Bret (August 26, 2000). "Kasavubu made a big impact". Calgary Sun.
- Cawthon, Graham. "1976". TheHistoryOfWWE.com.
- Cawthon, Graham. "1979". TheHistoryOfWWE.com.
- Hart, Bret (2008). Hitman: My Life in the Cartoon World of Wrestling. New York: Grand Central Publishing. ISBN 0446545287.
- Lentz III, Harris M. (2003). Biographical Dictionary of Professional Wrestling (2 ed.). McFarland. p. 182. ISBN 0786417544.
- "North American Heavyweight Title (Alberta & Saskatchewan)". Wrestling-Titles.com. Puroresu Dojo. 2003.
- Cawthon, Graham. "1980". TheHistoryOfWWE.com.
- "Stampede International Tag Team Title (Alberta & Saskatchewan)". Wrestling-Titles.com. Puroresu Dojo. 2003.
- Gary Will and Royal Duncan (2000). "(United States: Ohio)". Wrestling Title Histories (4th ed.). Archeus Communications. p. 80. ISBN 0-9698161-5-4.
- "Ohio Tag Team Title". Wrestling-Titles.com. Puroresu Dojo. 2003.