La Parka, longtime AAA star, passes away at age 54 following lung and kidney failure

La Parka passes away

On Saturday, Jan. 11, AAA owner Marisela Pena announced via social media that longtime AAA star La Parka – also known as La Parka Jr., La Parka II and La Parka AAA – passed away at the age of 54.

Parka, who is NOT the original La Parka that competed in WCW, suffered traumatic injuries after taking a bad fall on a dive during a match in October of 2019. The official release from AAA cited “lung and kidney failure” as the cause of death but it is believed those problems stemmed from the injury.

In a match, featuring ROH star Rush, Parka attempted a Tope Suicida (a suicide dive through the ropes) when his legs caught the middle rope and he came far short of Rush. Parka’s head and neck slammed into both the guardrail and concrete floor.

After having surgeries to repair a neck and cervical fracture, Parka had no feeling in his lower extremities and had trouble speaking, but eventually was able to begin communicating and feeling returned. According to Dave Meltzer, AAA paid for all of Parka’s medical bills after the injury and LuchaBlog reported that the company moved Parka into a house owned by AAA in Monterrey after he was released from the hospital.

“With infinite sadness in our hearts we say goodbye to an idol of Mexican wrestling and a great representative of (AAA),” Marisela Pena said in a statement. “The whole (Lucha Libre) family joins together to raise a prayer on behalf of (La Parka). Rest in peace.”

Parka – real name Jesus Alfonso Escobaza Huerta – started his long wrestling career  as an undercard wrestler going by a number of different names, but found his first success after AAA founder Antonio Pena repackaged him under the Karis la Momia name. Karis was a masked gimmick based on a mummy and spent much of 1995 and 1996 under this gimmick.

In 1996, the original La Parka left AAA as his home base in Mexico after fellow WCW star Konnan formed Promo Azteca and brought with him most of WCW’s luchadors, who also worked for AAA. Pena and AAA owned the La Parka gimmick, however, and Huerta was given the gimmick.

Initially AAA referred to him as La Parka Jr. or La Parka AAA as to not mistake him with the original but as the years went on that was dropped and many younger fans began to know him as the one, true La Parka.

While he was never as good as an in-ring performer as the original, La Parka Jr. became a gigantic star for AAA and – in many ways – the face of the promotion for much of its existence. AAA routinely main evented its biggest cards with La Parka Jr. and the biggest of his first decade under the mask was likely his Mask vs. Mask win against Cibernetico at TripleMania XII.

After many years of believing the match would never happen, La Parka Jr. and L.A. Park finally faced off against one another at TripleMania XVIII in a bloody, violent match that was billed as being for the rights to the “La Parka” name. However, AAA would renege on that stipulation almost immediately, but it would go down as La Parka Jr.’s best match of his career in most people’s minds.

Parka had been featured less and less by AAA before his injury but still made sporadic appearances – especially in the media – for the company. Also, while he never made many appearances in America unlike L.A. Park, he did appear for Impact Wrestling in 2018.

Only two months before his injury, Parka introduced his son as Karis la Momia Jr. as he began his wrestling career.

On behalf of the entire staff of Wrestleview, we’d like to send our sincere condolences to the family and friends of La Parka during this difficult time.