He was born in Laurens, SC and was the son of the late Paul and Goldie Hellams, Sr.
He is survived by his wife, Sylvia D. Robinson Hellams of the home; his three daughters, Kim Williamson (Tim), Donna Kennedy (Rick), and Laura Abercrombie (Jamie); his sister, Betty A. Bolt; his six grandchildren and one great-grandchild.
There are few people that knew him by his given name, most just knew him as “Cowboy”. To many he was known from the C&R Auto Parts, where he worked for 17+ years. He was a veteran of the United States Marine Corps. He served four years active duty in the Vietnam War and survived the Battle on Hamburger Hill.
After his Honorable Discharge from the Marine Corps his thirst for Adventure led him on many new quests. His first was a short stint of race car driving. As the need for speed ended he landed in the Rodeo Circuit. For several years he toured, specializing in Bull Riding and Steer Wrestling. His last adventure led him to be a member of the National Wrestling Alliance where he became known as “Desperado”. He trained and wrestled with some of the best in the business. He went on to be the founder of his own wrestling association, the SCW – Southern Championship Wrestling. Through this organization he put on shows not for profit but to help raise money for local causes and benefits such as, the American Cancer Society, March of Dimes, Shriners Hospital for Children, and Toys for Tots. He won the Tag Team Championship three times, the SCW Heavyweight Championship five times, and the SCW Hardcore Championship. In 1997, he was listed and appeared Pro Wrestling Illustrated Magazine and the APA Hall of Fame and later in 1999 was named Promoter of the Year.
In his last days reflecting back on his life, he wondered if he had lived to his vow of no regrets. He had not wanted to grow old wishing he had done things and didn’t. He answered his own question by saying, “It was a rough ride but a life lived to its fullest and I wouldn’t change a thing!”
A memorial service will be held, Monday, April 17, 2017 at 2 PM at the Gray Funeral Home Chapel of Clinton.
Condolences may be expressed to the family at www.grayfuneralhome.com