Born in Atlanta, Georgia in 1962, Gertrude Elizabeth Vachon’s career in wrestling was probably ordained from the moment in 1966 when Butcher Vachon married her mother and adopted Gertrude as his own daughter. Butcher continued to raise her after he spilt from her mother. The family tried to dissuade her from entering the business but times spent playing in the ring before and after events only heightened her desires to become a wrestler and at the age of sixteen she started formal training with her aunt Vivian Vachon and then with the Fabulous Moolah.
After a brief stint in Moolah’s all—female promotion Luna travelled to Florida Championship Wrestling and debuted as Trudy Herd, a reporter. Her mild-mannered, soft-spoken character would be a surprise to anyone who saw her in her WWF days, but after being knocked unconscious by Kevin Sullivan in an angle, she descended into some form of “madness” and ended up joining Sullivan’s Army of Darkness stable. It was here that she first shaved half of her hair off and began to cover her face in paint, a look that would become to be her trademark.
In Florida she feuded with Madusa Micelli, and teamed up with The Lock to form the Daughters of Darkness. Luna also took some trips to Japan, where Butcher Vachon would accompany her acting as her manager, and Mexico as well as wrestling for American Promotion’s such as Wild Women of Wrestling (where she also helped with the booking) and Powerful Women Of Wrestling. It was through their alliance with the latter that Luna found herself appearing at Superclash III in December 1988 which was the only pay-per-view event that company ever produced.
In the early 1990’s Luna managed the Blackhearts, Apocalypse and Destruction, who had gained fame in Stampede Wrestling. Tom Nash (Apocalypse) was her husband at the time whilst David Heath (Destruction) would later marry her. They worked in a number of territories, most famously the Universal Wrestling Federation (the Herb Abrams version) And also in All=Japan.
In 1993 she signed for the WWF, but only after she had (unsuccessfully) to get Heath a job with the company. As the story goes when they tried to hire her no-one knew where she was and the WWF had to hire a private investigator to find her. She debuted on-screen at WrestleMania IX as Shawn Michael’s valet/manager and attacked Tatanka’s manager Sensational Sherri to kick start a feud. When Bam Bam Bigelow had his own altercation with Sherri, this led to the two forming a partnership and Bam Bam announced to the world he had fallen in love. A mixed feud was abandoned when Luna suffered and injury and Sherri left the promotion and the highlight of this period came at WrestleMania X when the two teamed up to defeat Doink and Dink.
Luna had a few unsuccessful shots at new Women’s Champion, and old rival, Alundra “Madusa” Blayze before managing Bull Nakano in her attempts to unseat the champ. She then left the WWF for the independent circuit and ECW where she became Tommy Dreamer’s valet in his long-running feud with Raven. Most famously she wrestled a steel cage match against Stevie Richards, which she won.
In 1997 she had a brief stint in WCW, where she again targeted Madusa , with the two clashing at Slamboree. From there she returned to the WWF. She started a strange alliance with “The Artist Formally Known as” Goldust and then segued into a feud with Marc Mero and his wife Rena, otherwise known as Sable. The two mixed teams had a memorable match at WrestleMania XIV and then the women had an evening gown match at that year’s Unforgiven. Luna considered the WM match one of the highlights of her career, despite the enmity she had with Sable, who had been given…and taken…all the credit for the match. From there Luna became the manager of The Oddities, before again feuding with Sable, this time over the Women’s Title. This included a Leather Strap match at the Royal Rumble but subsequent rematches were cancelled when Luna was suspended after fighting Sable for real in a backstage incident.
Luna returned later that year and feuded with Tori and Ivory before reuniting on-screen with David Heath, now playing the Gangrel character. Her final big moment came at the Royal Rumble in 2000 where she refused to participate in a Swimsuit Contest in protest at the growing “sexualistaion” of the women’s division. Her character’s opinions weren’t far from her own real life dissatisfaction and after one backstage blow-up too many she was fired in early 2000.
Luna spent the next seven years globetrotting on the independent circuit wrestling everywhere from Puerto Rico to Germany and from Britain to Australia. Her last match came in December 2007 when she defeated Traci Brooks to retain the Great Lakes Championship Wrestling Ladies title. She was awarded the Cauliflower Alley Club’s “Ladies Wrestling Award” in 2009.
She passed away on August 27th 2010 of an overdose, having been through rehab at the WWE’s expense the previous year. Luna was certainly a memorable character and figure throughout her career, with a unique look that was once seen and never forgotten. Yet her wild nature, both on and off screen, hid a sharp wrestling brain. Luna was truly one of a kind.
MAJOR TITLES HELD:
AWF Women’s Championship, USWA Women’s Championship
Luna Vachon Vs Stevie Richards (ECW Heatwave 1995)
Luna Vachon & Goldust Vs Marc Mero & Sable (WrestleMania XIV)