Dusty Rhodes' son Dustin Runnels (aka Goldust aka Dustin Rhodes) says his family is still shocked and "extremely sad" over the passing of the WWE legend ... telling TMZ Sports, "My dad was my hero."
Dustin followed in his father's footsteps and became a wrestling superstar himself ... and he tells us, "I owe everything to my father. I am who I am because of him. He was an amazing man."
"My dad was the greatest man I've ever known."
As we previously reported, Rhodes collapsed at his home in Florida on Wednesday and passed away at a local hospital the next day.
Dustin tells us his family is extremely sad ... "but thankful for the unbelievable amount of support they've received from around the world."
Some of the biggest wrestlers in the world have offered their condolences to the Rhodes family ... including Ric Flair and Roddy Piper, who shared one of his favorite memories of the American Dream.