An interview with “White Lightning” Tim Horner

By  | February 12, 2018 | Filed under: News

It’s no secret that I am a wrestling fan.  Now, I am not talking about “Sports Entertainment” but “Wrasslin’.  A lot of today’s wrestling fans are not aware of the Legends of the sport that shaped the sport to what it is today.  Today, I got to interview a Legend of Professional Wrestling.

A couple weeks ago, I made contact with Tim Horner through Facebook.  We spoke back and forth several times.  Back in the mid-80s, I followed the Wrestling Circuit throughout Alabama and Tennessee.  During my recent move, I found a box full of pictures that I had taken at the matches.  I asked Tim if he would like to have a copy of the pics, which got us talking.  Tim agreed to a phone interview with me for an Exclusive for the Quad Cities Daily. 

First, I want to start out with a little history on Tim Horner.  Below is from the Wikipedia Website on him:

      “Tim Horner (born August 19, 1959) is a professional wrestler, best known as one half of The Lightning Express, with Brad Armstrong.

   Early career

Tim Horner started wrestling in 1978 in the Alabama territory.

Jim Crockett Promotions (1984-1987)

Horner signed to Jim Crockett Promotions in 1984, and formed The Lightning Express with Brad Armstrong.   They won the Universal Wrestling Federation tag team title in 1987, defeating Sting and Rick Steiner. They also won the National Wrestling Alliance‘s National Tag Team title

World Wrestling Federation (1988 – 1989)

Tim Horner signed with WWF in late 1988 and left in late 1989.  On televised matches he was used as a jobber in both singles and tag-team matches, while at house shows he was frequently victorious over other jobbers including Danny DavisJose EstradaBarry HorowitzJose Luis RiveraIron Mike SharpeTom MageeSteve Lombardi, and Johnny K-9 (Taras Bulba).

World Championship Wrestling / Smoky Mountain Wrestling (1990 – 1994)

In the 1990s, Horner wrestled for World Championship Wrestling as the masked Star Blazer, and for Smoky Mountain Wrestling (SMW). In SMW, he also played the original Kendo the Samurai managed by Daryl Van Horne. He later returned to WCW. 

Later career

After WCW, he occasionally wrestled on independent shows in Georgia and Tennessee. He then worked in World Wrestling Entertainment as a producer for its SmackDown! Brand, until October 26, 2006. On June 16, 2013, he teamed with Tom Prichard to defeat Bob Orton, Jr. and George South at the Brad Armstrong Memorial Event”

 

I met Tim back in the 80s in Florence, Alabama.  We sat outside the Florence-Lauderdale Coliseum and talked for about 20 minutes one night.  We didn’t talk about the business, just about food, places to eat, etc.  He was a super nice guy.  I think I was 17 years old at the time. He didn’t have to take time with a kid, but the fact that he did, shows integrity and ethics.

I spoke with Tim today and interviewed him for this article.

 

  1. Tell me about Tim Horner. Your upbringing, education, etc.  The Early Years.

“I grew up in Morristown, Tennessee.  I attended and graduated Morristown East High School.  I lettered in Wrestling.  I also played Football where I was an All-American while there.  I attended College for one year before I dropped out to pursue my dream of becoming a Professional Wrestler.

 

   “I am married with two daughters.  My wife is from Sheffield, Alabama.”

Tim Horner and family

 

  1. How did you break into the sport of Professional Wrestling?

“White Lightning” Tim Horner

“I attended Professional Wrestling matches while in High School.  One time, when I was in Junior High, I decided I was going to get into the ring with the Mongolian Stomper and Robert Fuller.  As I was climbing through the ring ropes, a police officer that I knew stopped me.  The Booker/Promoter came over and gave me a cussing.   I kept asking him to not tell me parents because I knew that they would let me attend the matches anymore.   He then threw me out of the building. 

Shortly thereafter, he came outside and apologized for cussing at me.  He told me that I had ‘a lot of spunk.’  He asked me my weight, which was around 135 pounds at the time.  He gave me his card and told me to call him when I reached 200 lbs and he would give me a tryout.  I carried that card for 2 ½ years.  When I reached my goal of 200 lbs, I called him.  I didn’t think he would answer but he did and he got me in the business?”

 

  1. During your career, you spent time in Georgia Championship Wrestling, Continental Championship Wrestling, WCW, Smoky Mt Wrestling as well as the WWE. Which was your favorite organization to work for?

“It has to be Continental Championship Wrestling.  Continental was primarily in the Alabama and Tennessee areas.   I liked it because you could interact with the fans.  It was more “Down to Earth.”    

 

 

  1. It is common knowledge that Brad Armstrong and you were close friends. I met Brad several times and he was always a super nice guy.  The two of you formed a successful Tag Team.  Sadly, Brad has passed away.  Tell me about your relationship with Brad.

Time Horner and Brad Armstrong

We were like brothers.   We talked all the time.  He came up in May of 2012 for a benefit for the local football time to help them raise money.  Ted Dibiase was also present.  Ted attended the event and then preached at the local church on Sunday. 

 

Brad and I were scheduled to perform in Pell City, Alabama the last of October 2012.  My Father passed away and I had shingles. I called Brad and told him that I would not be able to perform.  Brad told me that he understood and would get his Dad (Bullet Bob Armstrong) to fill in. 

 

Brad passed away on November1st, 2012.  I really miss him.”

 

  1. Your nickname is White Lightning. How did you get this nickname and who gave it to you?

    Tim Horner with the great Gordon Solie

Whitey Calwell was a local wrestler in the area when I started out.  Everyone thought that I was his son.  He was later killed in a car wreck.  He talked about me being fast. 

 

Later Blackjack Mulligan (Barry Windham’s Father) made a comment that I was “quick as lightning.”  So, it kinda stuck and I became White Lighting Tim Horner.  When Brad (Armstrong) and I formed a Tag Team, it was named the Lightning Express”. 

 

  1. Ric Flair has gone on record several times saying that his toughest opponent was Ricky “The Dragon Steamboat” and he really liked working with Sting.  Let’s flip that to Tim Horner.  Who was your toughest opponent?      Who did you like

    Tim Horner vs Ric Flair

    working with the most?

“There were so many tough opponents.  I would have to say that my toughest opponent would be Harley Race.  I wrestled him in Canada when he was World Champion.  Harley told me to do whatever I wanted.  I have to tell you that he “schooled” me.  It was a tough match. 

 

As far as the person I enjoyed working with the most that would have to be Arn Anderson.”

 

***Note.  Time made the following comment off subject:  “its kind a weird that fans today of wrestling, don’t know who we are.  When I worked for the WWE, no one knew who I was.  Arn (Anderson) told me that no one knew who he was.  It is unbelievable that people did not know who Arn Anderson, the person, who gave the Four Horsemen their name.”

 

  1. What is your favorite Venue to wrestling in?

“That would be Knoxville, Tennessee because it was home.  Boutwell in Birmingham, Alabama would be second.  I did headline the Omni with the Road Warriors in 1984.  When I was in the WWE, I got to perform in Madison Square Garden.    I traveled to Japan and had the pleasure to wrestle in the Egg Dome in front of 85,000 people. “

 

 

 

  1. Could Continental Championship Wrestling survive in today’s market of Sports Entertainment?

“It would be hard.  With the marketing that goes one and with it being scripted so much, it would be difficult.”

 

 

Time Horner

  1. What is Tim Horner doing these days?

I have been in the Bail Bonding Business for the last 21 years.  It keeps me busy.  I play several musical instruments so I play at my church, where I am very active at.”

 

  1. What would you like to say to the “White Lightning” Tim Horner fans out there today?

“I want to say thank you for the support over the years.  Without the fans, there might not have been a White Lighting Tim Horner.  I still enjoy attending the Legends Shows around the country.  It’s always funny that the Legends are always saying to each other “where’s your hair” or “you have put on a few pounds.”  It is fun to attend these shows. 

 

Also, I book a band called American Pride Band.  They are a Statler Brothers Tribute Band.   If you know of an organization that wants to raise money for a cause, they can book this band.  The Kiowa Club recently raised $24,000 with us.  You can find the band’s website at:

https://www.americanpridecountry.com/ .  You can contact me at 423-748-3374 to book the band. “

In closing, I have to say, I enjoyed the interview.  Tim talked to me about subjects that were off topic such as music in this area.  He is a genuine person that cares for his fans.  If you are not familiar with Tim’s work, go to YouTube and check out videos there.

The following 2 photos were taken by this author in Florence, Alabama.  I believe it was 1985ish

 

 

 

 

    Bobby Inman is retired from Law Enforcement after 21 years of Service.  He is the Store Manager of Southern Heritage Gun & Pawn in Tuscumbia.   He has articles published in Law & Order Magazine, Police Marksman Magazine, Guns & Weapons for Law Enforcement Magazine as well as several published ebooks on Amazon, Kobo Writing, as well as Nook (Barnes & Noble).  He is owner of Poopiedog, an Animal Rescue Dachshund, who is his constant companion.   He is a Senior Investigative Reporter for the Quad Cities Daily

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