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Overview (3)

Born in New York City, New York, USA
Died in Norcross, Georgia, USA  (heart attack)
Birth NameFrank Simmons Leavitt

Mini Bio (1)

Famed wrestler Man Mountain Dean was born Frank Simmons Leavitt in New York City in 1891. Oversize almost from birth, he was able to lie about his age--and get away with it--to join the army at 14 years of age. He was posted to the US-Mexcian border, where he served in the unit commanded by Gen. John J. Pershing, and was later transferred to Europe during World War I and saw combat duty in France. After the war he tried a career as a professional football player--he had played, and excelled in, a number of sports during his high-school years--and played with the New York Giants team. He didn't meet with any particular success as a football player, and while recuperating from an injury in Florida he met and married Doris Dean. He left football to embark on a career as a professional wrestler, with his wife as his manager.

She booked him on an exhibition tour of Germany, which met with great success. He made another successful tour, this time in England, and while there he was hired as a double for star Charles Laughton in The Private Life of Henry VIII. (1933). Upon his return to the US he was offered more work in pictures--he appeared in roughly 30 of them altogether--and became a favorite of the Hollywood crowd. He was able to command salaries of up to $1500 for a match--a substantial sum in the professional wrestling world--and used his enormous girth (300+ pounds) and his long, full beard as his trademarks.

After a successful wrestling career, he retired to his farm near Norcross, Georgia, in 1937. He got involved in local politics, and eventually studied journalism at the University of Georgia in Atlanta.

He died at his farm on May 29, 1953.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: frankfob2@yahoo.com

Spouse (1)

Doris Dean (1928 - ?)

Trivia (8)

Before taking the name Man Mountain Dean, he was known as the Hell's Kitchen Hillbilly, then Stone Mountain Leavitt.
He began his wrestling career around 1914 using the name "Soldier Leavitt."
Due to his large size, he was able to lie about his age and join the Army at the age of only 14. He served on the U.S.-Mexican border with Gen. John J. Pershing. He later saw combat in France during World War I.
Early in his professional wrestling career, he adopted the hillbilly persona and the moniker "Hell's Kitchen Bill-Bill." The persona and name were suggested by the famed writer Damon Runyon.
Despite his age, he re-entered the Army to serve his country during World War II. He earned the rank of Master Sergeant.
After World War II, he enrolled at the University of Georgia where he majored in journalism.
Not to be confused with British actor Alf Dean, aka "A.J. 'Man Mountain' Dean", who can be seen in such later films as Man of the Moment (1955), The Iron Petticoat (1956), Jumping for Joy (1956) and Surprise Package (1960).

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