Today marks the 10-year anniversary of an unspeakable WWE incident that has been spoken upon to the point of biblical proportion.
Fan inquiry and subsequent storytelling of what has now come to be known as the plane ride from hell has elevated a dark day for the WWE into something of an urban myth.
But this was so much more.
On May 5th, 2002, everything that is wrong with the rock-star lifestyle of being a pro wrestler was furiously showcased during a delayed flight overseas following a WWE pay-per-view.
Throw in some drugs, alcohol and testosterone and a plane ride party turned into a legal and professional nightmare.
Authority was rendered helpless. Order was unraveled. Civility, nonexistent. Insanity ensued and the inmate passengers ran the aircraft asylum, seat belts be damned.
Events stemming from the plane ride from hell would receive so much notoriety on the Internet that they were publicly addressed by then-vice president of talent relations Jim Ross in his weekly Ross Report column:
The flight was about seven hours in length and at times was low-lighted by a handful of people who consumed too much alcohol and consequently acted like children whose parents were away and left the liquor cabinet unlocked.
The conduct of this inebriated minority was unacceptable and will not be tolerated. Procedures have been put in place to ensure such conduct does not occur in the future. The bottom line is this: yours truly is the person in charge of the talent roster and the buck stops with me. We will do all we humanly can to solve the problem.
What Ross conveniently failed to mention in his public acceptance of blame was that alcohol was far from the only weapon of choice when it came to wrestler inebriation.
In a long, sad expose of Ric Flair's struggles outside of the ring, Shane Ryan of Grantland.com described a scene where "wrestlers on the flight passed out syringes to the flight attendants with instructions to dispose of them."
During an interview with YouShoot, Sean Waltman went into explicit detail of liberal use of Gamma-Hydroxybutyric acid (GHB), which was a legal depressant at the time that was allegedly abused by numerous wrestlers.
The culprits of Flight 666 were a sizable laundry list of Hall of Famers, world champions and habitual trouble makers. Most offenders had a history of personal demons and/or backstage disputes that preceded them, and on this day their legends would only grow.
Each episode of the soap opera, that in many ways was too real, set forth shockingly new lows that the wrestlers in question were not afraid to stoop to.