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By Mike Johnson on 2019-10-17 10:26:00

The Camden New Journal in England published an article today noting that an investigation into the passing of lucha libre legend Silver King, real name, César Cuauhtémoc González Barrón, 51 years old this past May while performing for a promotion named Lucha Libre World at the Roundhouse Theatre in Camden in North London blamed "multiple faillures" in the minutes after Barron suffered a heart attack in the ring.

The St. Pancras Coroner's Court's Senior Coroner Mary Hassell stated that an ambulance not being called for five minutes after Barrón suffered cardiac arrest as well as "ineffective" CPR being performed on him before EMTs arrived meant the lucha star "lost the opportunity to have the best treatment possible and lost the opportunity of survival that otherwise would have been afforded to him."

Silver King was competing against Juventud Guerrera at the time of his death.  During the match, Silver King nailed a clothesline and covered Guerrera, who kicked up.  King did not get off the mat and after a long moment where Guerrera and the referee checked on him, a number of other wrestlers hit the ring.  An ambulance was called and King was brought to the hospital.   At the time, reports were that a defibrillator was used but the Coroner's investigation specifically mentions that a defibrillator may have assisted in trying to save Barrón and the inquest reveals it was not initially brought into the ring.

Hassell stated, "When I'm talking about failure in first aid, I'm talking about a whole raft, the whole context of the first aid that was offered.  In every way, there was a failure properly to plan that everybody knew what they were doing, that procedures were in place so that first and foremost a person who would became unwell would be identified in the ring immediately."

Hassell stated that Barrón's passing that due to natural causes, likely brought on by the additional stresses performing brought to his heart. 

The inquest's Dr. Alan Bates also determined that Barron had likely suffered a previous heart attack in the months or even years before his passing, but noted that there would have been a greater likelihood of Barron surviving if he had been given mouth to mouth resuscitation immediately, but would not state it would have been probably that he would have survived. 

Another factor that delayed EMTs getting to Barrón by several minutes was that after the ambulance arrived at the front of the building, a security guard brought EMTs around and had them enter from the back of the venue, which delayed them in getting to and providing aid for Barrón.  Paramedic Cara Mitchell stated that she would have liked to have gotten to Barrón quicker and that when they arrived at the ring, the person provided CPR was doing it in a "fast" and "ineffective" manner.

There was also confusion in the moment as the first responder who was on hand at the event, Katharine Locke, was not made aware of what the issue was when she was asked to come to the ring and initially believed it was for an issue in the crowd.  She did not bring a defibrillator with her initially and did not provide CPR as someone who had claimed they were a Doctor was already in the ring doing it.  That person was not identified in the report.  Locke did not see Barrón's collapse and was initially worried there was a spinal injury.

Promoter Ruben Cordero admitted there were no pre-show medicals and that Barrón had not volunteered any information regarding any health issues.  Cordero also stated that in hindsight, the procedures they had in place were not adequate and that there was a question of whether he or the venue were in charge of the medical aspect of the show - and that he wishes he had pushed to be in charge and oversee that aspect.  

The venue was not asked to participate in the investigation and declined comment to the newspaper.

Barron, performing his entire career as Silver King, was a beloved second generation star, the son of Dr. Wagner and the brother of Dr. Wagner Jr.   He debuted in 1985 and had wrestled regularly since that time.  He had a long, long run in Mexico working for AAA, the UWA, IWRG and CMLL as well as countless independent promotions to the points he was intertwined in pretty much all of lucha libre history over the last several decades.   In New Japan Pro Wrestling, he was the third man to use the Black Tiger persona, following Mark "Rollerball" Rocco and Eddy Guerrero.  He and El Texano had a long run as Los Cowboys.  He had a run as the All Japan Pro Wrestling Junior Heavyweight Champion.  He also toured for IWA Japan in the early 1990s.

Silver King also worked for WCW for three years, mostly working undercard six man tag team bouts, one of many high-level stars in Mexico who were used as undercard hands by WCW.  His highest profile singles bout was challenging Juventud Guerrera for the WCW Cruiserweight Championship at the 1998 Fall Brawl PPV.  He was a member of the Latino World Order that Eddy Guerrero formed and was briefly managed by Stacy Keibler in 2000.   He departed the company to return to Mexico in 2000.  

In the United States, King would be best known for playing the lead villain, Ramses, in the 2006 Jack Black comedy Nacho Libre.    After his passing, Jack Black played tribute to him, writing, "César González...vaya con dios, hermano."

Thanks to James Marshall.

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