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Laurent Soucie

Coach/Wrestler Laurent Soucie

Laurent Soucie has had more wrestling experience than most. He was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, one of six children. His first mat burns came when rolling around the old canvas and horsehair mats with his brother, Kevin, while his father, Donald Soucie, was the wrestling coach at Milwaukee Juneau High School.

While in the fifth and sixth grades Laurent practiced with the freshman at Pulaski High School where his dad was then coaching. Since there was no organized junior high school program at that time, he wrestled in the Catholic Youth Organization tournament. He wrestled varsity at Pulaski High School, winning the City Conference Championship and placing third in the state at 167 pounds. He continued to wrestle at UW-Madison under Duane Kleven and Russ Hellickson. He was a four-year letter-winner, earning a degree in physical education in 1976. While at UW-Madison he placed fourth in the Big Ten, as a NCAA All American three years and was selected to the East-West All Start Classic. As a senior he won the Big Ten at 190 pounds, placed third in the NCAA tournament and a five-time Northern Open winner.

He continued to wrestle after college, competing internationally in the 1976 Midlands Tournament, was an alternate on the 1976 Olympic team, was a member of the 1977 World Freestyle team at 198 pounds, won the 1977 USWF National Freestyle Championship at 198 pounds, made the USA team to Tiblisi, USSR and Poland, winning a silver medal at Tiblisi. In 1978, he won a silver medal at the World Cup Freestyle Championships and again made the USA team to Tiblisi, USSR. That year he won a gold medal and outstanding wrestler honors at the Cerro Pelado tournament in Cuba. Before retiring from the amateur ranks in 1981 he earned a bronze medal as a 1979 USA team member and earned a spot on the World Freestyle team. He also won the National AAU Greco-Roman title and was voted outstanding wrestler, competed in1981, winning a gold medal.

In May, 1981, Laurent changed his focus in wrestling, joining the ranks of the American Wrestling Association (AWA), becoming a professional wrestler under the tutelage of professional great Verne Gagne. From there he transferred to the NWA and finally landed in the World Wrestling Federation (WWF). Deciding that the show biz life was not for him, he returned to Milwaukee, joining a family-owned business as a sales professional.

He has been a guest clinician at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Whitewater and Stevens Point summer camps over the last 15 years.

In 1992 Laurent and his wife moved their family to a 40-acre farm north of Lodi where he is "Mr. Mom, "writing, performing music, beekeeping and renovating an old farmhouse. He coaches soccer and basketball in the community and helps out in Jack Reinwand's wrestling program. He plays saxophone in the community band and has acted in the local community theater.

He is currently campaigning for the State Assembly. Laurent and his wife, Wendy have three children, Kyle, Sans and Remie.