Roger Staubach? Dan Marino? Lynn Swann? Any of these guys the most iconic figure for NFL football in the late 70s and 80s? Nah, that honor would belong to Rollen Stewart.
If you were alive in the aforementioned period and regularly watched sporting events, you cannot help but remember Rollen Stewart. Well, you’ll remember his hair. Well, you’ll remember the wig he wore. Anybody
What started as some kind of lark quickly transformed into some kind of offbeat crusade. Stewart became obsessed with Christianity and he saw his appearance on network TV as a totally creative and unique way of spreading the word of the Lord. That message seemed to show up everywhere. While the fondest memories of those who remember Rainbow Man are probably from his standard appearance behind the goalposts at NFL games, you must understand that his presence as one of the single most important individuals of pop culture during the height of his fame came as a result of showing up everywhere. The Master’s golf tournament? Rainbow Man was there. The NBA finals? Rainbow Man was there. Somehow Rainbow Man even managed to get into position for a classic shot standing behind the pit area of the winner of one of the Indianapolis 500 races.
The man was everywhere.
The effort to spread the word of Christianity eventually took a turn down the dark side. The networks had grown increasingly bored with Rainbow Man and so took away his easiest claim to fame. Denied regular appearances at sporting stadiums, Rollen Stewart began going a bit mental. Stink bombings of churches, religious bookstores and the Crystal Cathedral indicated that Rainbow Man had moved to a completely different level when it came to spread the gospel.
The latter half of the 1980s were not as kind to Rollen Stewart as the latter half of the 1970s had been. The man who had once been as much a fixture of the American sports scene as Howard Cosell had to deal with his wife taking a powder after he had allegedly choked her, his car and residence was destroyed by a driver who had been allowed to get onto the road after imbibing far too much and he began to increasingly believe that the End was Nigh.
Fast forward to 1992. The Rapture was very near and Rollen Stewart felt that, like a rainbow, he would be lifted into the sky and then into paradise. For some reason, this belief led to his attempted kidnapping of two men
Rainbow Man was sentenced to three life sentences for kidnapping. Parole is continually denied. He was the subject of a documentary titled “Rainbow Man/John 3:16.”