WWE star Bray Wyatt has died unexpectedly at the age of 36. Wyatt's death was announced in a tweet by WWE Chief Content Officer Triple H, via a tweet. "Just received a call from WWE Hall of Famer Mike Rotunda who informed us of the tragic news that our WWE family member for life Windham Rotunda - also known as Bray Wyatt - unexpectedly passed earlier today.
"Our thoughts are with his family and we ask that everyone respect their privacy at this time." Wyatt is believed to have suffered a massive heart attack. The three-time WWE world championship had not competed since his win against LA Knight in a unique "Mountain Dew Pitch Black Match" at the Royal Rumble in January.
Unexpected and Shocking Death
The exact cause of Wyatt's death was not initially revealed, but according to Fightful's Sean Ross Sapp reported that it was a heart attack. Earlier reports had indicated that he was on the brink of making a comeback, having received medical clearance to resume his wrestling career in the ring.
Despite receiving medical clearance to return to wrestling, WWE had been taking precautions to ensure his sustained well-being after the illness, which was seen as a potential threat to both his career and life.
The report stated that the Florida-born wrestler's condition had dramatically improved. As a result, the company had begun mapping out strategies for the former WWE champion's future.
The month of September had been identified as a potential timeframe for his comeback, although there was no official confirmation of this plan.
Wrestling reporter Sean Ross Sapp posted on X: "I was given permission to reveal that earlier this year Windham Rotunda (Bray Wyatt) got COVID that exacerbated a heart issues. There was a lot of positive progress towards a return and his recovery.
"Unfortunately today he suffered a heart attack and passed away."
WWE also mourned Wyatt's death in a statement: "WWE is saddened to learn that Windham Rotunda, also known as Bray Wyatt, passed away on Thursday, Aug. 24, at age 36."
Prior to his hiatus for health reasons, Wyatt, along with his evolved character "the fiend," had been planned to be part of a group that included the enigmatic 'Uncle Howdy' (speculated to be his actual brother), fellow wrestler Bo Dallas, Alexa Bliss, Eric Young, and potentially other wrestlers.
This stable was in the works, but plans had to be put on hold due to Wyatt's health concerns.
Bliss has since gone on maternity leave, and Young left the company due to his reluctance to work under Vince McMahon's direction.
Wyatt is survived by his former wife Samantha Rotunda and their two daughters, along with his fiancée, WWE ring announcer JoJo, and their two children.
Several well-known WWE figures from both the past and the present conveyed their condolences to Wyatt's family.
"Im heartbroken over the news of Bray Wyatt's passing," Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson wrote on X, formerly Twitter.
"Always had tremendous respect and love for him and the Rotunda family. Loved his presence, promos, in ring work and connection with @wwe universe. Very unique, cool and rare character, which is hard to create in our crazy world of pro wrestling. Still processing losing the goat, Terry Funk yesterday and now Bray today."
Wyatt first signed with WWE in 2009 and began his wrestling journey in developmental territories like FCW and NXT. In 2012, he advanced to the main roster.
He made his debut as the leader of the Wyatt Family, a stable that included Luke Harper (who sadly passed away from a respiratory ailment in 2020 at the age of 41) and Erick Rowan. Eventually, Braun Strowman was also incorporated into the group.
Wyatt gained his highest recognition in WWE through his portrayal of "The Fiend." This transformative phase started with a series of surreal "Firefly Funhouse" videos, showcasing Wyatt alongside various unsettling puppets.
This concept evolved into a character who displayed an unstoppable nature and alternated between his "Funhouse" persona and his more ominous "Fiend" persona. This duality encouraged the audience to embrace the supernatural aspects of the character and suspend their disbelief.
Wyatt's untimely demise is not the sole recent event that has shaken the wrestling community, as WWE Hall of Famer Terry Funk also passed away at the age of 79 on Wednesday.