Ivan was born the 25th day of August 1942. and raised on a dairy farm in Canada . He came from a family of seven boys and three girls with Ivan being a middle child.
After watching wrestling on TV since eight years old, Ivan so wanted to become a professional wrestler that he wrestled with his chores on the dairy farm, dreaming of the day he would make his dream come true. Ivan not only wrestled with chores but also wrestled his brothers.
Upon leaving school at 18 years old, Ivan finally made it to Jack Wentworth's wrestling school in Hamilton, Ontario. After a year of training - weightlifting and learning all the holds - Ivan became Red McNulty, an Irish rogue, who hailed from Dublin, Ireland wearing a patch over his eye and wrestled as a heel. He soon got his debut match which was against Bruno Sammartino "The Living Legend" on TV in Pittsburgh, Pa .
For the next three years Ivan wrestled around the Toronto area, eventually quitting his regular job to wrestle in the Northwest area. Ivan there acquired his wrestling experience and got his first trip to Japan. In 1967, Ivan Koloff, the Russian Bear was born and debuted in Montreal Canada. becoming the Canadian Heavyweight Champion. The next 31 years consisted of traveling to Europe, Japan, Australia, West Indies, and Puerto Rico, as well as the United States. Ivan won many titles and made his biggest dream come true.
Currently, Ivan lives in Greenville, NC with his wife, Renae and has four adult children. He remains active in various charities (he was always known away from the ring as a nice easygoing person despite his vicious bad guy image).
Ivan became a born again Christian in 1996 and today, travels
to churches to share his testimony