The passing of William Moody, a.k.a. Paul Bearer, is sending shockwaves through the WWE Universe.
WWE.com has released the following statement.
WWE is saddened to learn of the passing of William Moody, aka Paul Bearer. Moody made his WWE debut in 1991 as the manager of The Undertaker and went on to become a memorable part of WWE over the course of the next 20 years.
Our deepest condolences go out to Moody’s family, friends and fans.
This is some somber news for the WWE Universe as WrestleMania approaches. Moody managed Undertaker on and off since his debut back in 1991. Although there was no word that he would be joining Undertaker at this year's event, it's safe to say that when you see one, you think of the other.
The Paul Bearer character should easily go down in history as one of the greatest WWE managers of all time. In today's product, it is rare to find any manager that brings the passion and character that Moody brought. I will not go as far as saying that Moody's presence made the Undertaker persona. However, having Moody by his side definitely added an aura and a special wrinkle to the character of the Undertaker.
I know this might be bit premature, but I would like to see Moody inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame next year. I think that the things he has brought to this business have more than earned him a slot in the hall. It might be fair to say that Moody already deserves to be in the Hall of Fame.
As we continue on the road to WrestleMania, I will be curious to see if we get any response from the Deadman himself. With his streak, Undertaker never needs any extra motivation to give it his all on the biggest stage of them all. But I don't think that it would surprise anyone if he were to find a way to pay homage to Moody on April 7, 2013.
As WWE Superstars are hearing the news, they are taking to social media to express their thoughts. Here are some of the thoughts regarding the loss of one of the greatest managers of all time.
Just found out Paul Bearer died tonight.He was always so nice when I talked to him. My thoughts n prayers are w/ his family #RIPPaulBearer— The Miz (@mikethemiz) March 6, 2013
RIP Paul Bearer— Zack Ryder (@ZackRyder) March 6, 2013
Just informed via wwe.com Paul Bearer aka Percy Pringle passed away earlier today. I have no other details. RIP old friend.— Jim Ross (@JRsBBQ) March 6, 2013
This picture was taken 10 days ago...we lost a dear friend today..you will be missed by many, Paul Bearer. twitter.com/JerryLawler/st…— Jerry Lawler (@JerryLawler) March 6, 2013
So sad.We lost a great person and a wonderful man today.Rest in peace paul bearer. God bless his family and Godspeed.— Michael Cole (@MichaelCole) March 6, 2013
Very sorry to hear of the passing of Paul Bearer.My best wishes to his family.A lovely man and my friend.RIP.— William Regal (@RealKingRegal) March 6, 2013
I'm so sorry to hear of the passing of Paul Bearer. Our prayers go out to him and his family. God Bless!!— Shawn Michaels (@ShawnMichaels) March 6, 2013
Rest in peace, Paul Bearer. You will never be forgotten. There will never be another.— Triple H (@TripleH) March 6, 2013
Sad to hear of the passing of Bill Moody (Paul Bearer)... Not a nicer man in the biz. RIP bro— Diamond Dallas Page (@RealDDP) March 6, 2013
Saddened to learn of the passing of Paul Bearer (William Moody). He was a unique, one of a kind individual both in and out of the ring. RIP— Howard Finkel (@howardfinkel) March 6, 2013
Very sad night. RIP Paul Bearer, a man I grew up watching on tv and was lucky enough to have later on, as a friend. twitter.com/JustinRoberts/…— Justin Roberts (@JustinRoberts) March 6, 2013
Goodbye to a good friend, Paul Bearer. Say hi to Owen for me.— Bret Hart (@BretHart) March 6, 2013
Very sad about Paul Bearer,he was a great person and one of the original boys,he was what made wrestling great much love much respect HH— Hulk Hogan (@HulkHogan) March 6, 2013
If these messages say anything, it's that Moody was loved by his colleagues.
With WrestleMania still five weeks away WWE has plenty of time to honor Moody properly. Properly of course being by including him in the 2013 WWE Hall of Fame induction class.