Reid Flair, the youngest son of professional wrestling legend Ric Flair, has reportedly passed away at the age of 25, according to F4WOnline.com.
No details have been released regarding the cause of Reid's death, but the loss is obviously a tragedy considering his young age.
Not only is it awful for the Flair family, but the wrestling world has lost a promising up-and-comer as well.
The younger Flair had been pursuing a wrestling career in his own right, as he performed for numerous independent promotions over the past few years. He debuted for All Japan Pro Wrestling last year and began to blaze his own trail through the business after his father's immense success.
Reid even competed for NWA Charlotte and became the NWA Mid-Atlantic Heritage Champion in 2009. His father was easily the biggest star in NWA history, as evidenced by his status as a 24-time world champion.
Reid obviously had a long way to go in order to reach his father's level, but he was definitely following in his footsteps.
Reid's meteoric rise through the industry was disrupted a few years ago, as he had some issues with the law, including an arrest for heroin possession in 2009, according to WSOCTV.com. He cleaned his act up in recent years and appeared to be on the path to big things as a professional wrestler, however.
During an interview with Hit The Ropes in 2011, Reid expressed interest in one day becoming a WWE Superstar. Ric worked for TNA at the time and there were rumors regarding Reid signing with TNA, but he made it clear that his ultimate goal was to make it to the "big time."
Unfortunately, we'll never have the pleasure of seeing what Reid could have done with that type of opportunity.
While Reid was talented, there are no guarantees that he would have been snapped up by WWE. With that said, WWE has been beefing up its NXT developmental territory and even signed Reid's sister, Ashley.
Also, with Ric making appearances for WWE once again, Reid stood a pretty good chance of at least being given a look by WWE. He would have had to put the work in and get over on his own accord despite his father's reputation, but perhaps all he needed was an opportunity.
Reid and Ric were scheduled to appear together at the Big Time Wrestling events in Hagerstown, Md., and Altoona, Pa., on March 29 and 30, respectively. The father-son duo did a great deal of work together on the independent scene, with Ric often serving as Reid's manager.
It would have been interesting to see them team up in WWE as well. Ric is getting to the point where he can't really wrestle any longer, but he is still among the best on the mic and is universally beloved by fans.
He might have been all Reid needed to get over with the fans and become a big star in what he called the "big time."
Whenever we hear about a wrestling-related death, it is obviously heartbreaking. Tragedies like this tend to sting even more, though, because Reid was never able to reach his full potential, and there is no telling how high of a ceiling he had. Unfortunately, we'll never know for sure.