At Wednesday’s AEW Collision Fyter Fest tapings in Duluth, Georgia, AEW “Real” World Champion CM Punk paid tribute to the legendary Terry Funk.
Punk has frequently mentioned his admiration for Funk, who died on Wednesday at the age of 79. Funk defeated Punk by DQ at ROH Glory By Honor II on September 20, 2003; Punk and Julio Dinero defeated Funk and The Sandman at NWA TNA Weekly PPV #79 on February 4, 2004; and Funk and Raven defeated Punk and Dinero at NWA TNA Weekly PPV #81 on February 18, 2004. Punk, Sting, Darby Allin, and a mystery partner competed against AEW TNT Champion Luchasaurus, ROH World Six-Man Tag Team Champion Brian Cage, Jay White, and Swerve Strickland on Wednesday’s Fyter Fest Collision tapings, with ROH World Television Champion Samoa Joe on commentary. Full spoilers are available by clicking here.
Following the Collision match and a post-match angle, Punk took a fan sign that read “TERRY FUNK FOREVER,” and then paid tribute to the WWE and International Professional Wrestling Hall of Famer. Following Punk’s speech, the audience chanted “Terry!” and then “Thank you, Terry!” as Allin and Sting watched from the stage. The transcript and video are available below.
For those who missed it, the original announcements on Funk’s death from two of his longtime friends and rivals can be found by clicking here.
PWInsider provided the following transcript and video of Punk’s tribute to Funk:
“Ladies and gentlemen, I love coming to work every day to see two different generations, one I’m in the middle of… Sting and Darby Allin. I appreciate coming to work and seeing all of you staying late, hanging out with all of us, letting us continue. One of the big reasons I would say that I’m here. Maybe that Sting’s here, maybe that Darby is here. There’s a little piece of this man and each and every single one of you here today. I stand on the shoulders of giants and today we lost one, Terry Funk. No matter what religion you believe, maybe you don’t have a religion. One thing I believe is that you are never truly gone as long as the people who look up to you remember you and continue to tell stories long after you’re gone. My heart is heavy tonight because Terry is gone, but I can still smile because Sting is still here. Bret Hart is still with us. I text him every day. There’s a lot of legends that are still here, but we have to give respect to people that paved the way. Let me hear, one time, for Terry Funk.”
— Assad (@CoverDriveCric) August 24, 2023