Dwayne Johnson honors late father in emotional award show speech: ‘That guy was a trailblazer’

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By , RADIO.COM

Dwayne Johnson got choked up during an award show acceptance speech in which he paid tribute to his late father.

The “Hobbs & Shaw” star received the The Trailblazer Award at the Hollywood Film Critics Association Film Awards on Friday and dedicated it to his dad, Rocky Johnson, who died last year, reported Entertainment Weekly.

"Man, that guy was a trailblazer,” a visibly emotional Johnson said in the virtual speech. “As complicated as our relationship was, our father-son relationship — tough love, tough love — he was a real trailblazer, because what trailblazers do is, they change people's behavior. And that's what he did. And he did everything he could to send people home happy."

Johnson’s father, who was a former professional wrestler and WWE Hall of Famer, died on January 15th, 2020 from a pulmonary embolism caused by a blood clot in his leg. He was 75.

Last year, the “Jumanji” actor shared the heartfelt eulogy he gave at his father’s funeral. In the emotional clip, Johnson described his dad as a “trailblazer” for breaking racial barriers in the wrestling industry in the ‘60s and ‘70s.

“You have a Black man coming in, it’s an all-white audience and all these small little towns that eventually I would go on to wrestle in,” Johnson said. “But at that time he changed the audience’s behavior and actually had them cheer for this Black man.”

“Dad, you lived a full and meaningful life,” Johnson elaborated in the post’s caption. ”You trail blazed and even harder, you changed people’s harsh behaviors toward a man of color. Paving the way for me, my family and generations to come.”

On “Young Rock,” the new NBC sitcom based on the 48-year-old’s life, Rocky Johnson is portrayed by Joseph Lee Anderson.

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