Chris Benoit: The Day Wrestling Died

Steven DavisonCorrespondent IMay 12, 2009

NEW YORK - MARCH 11:  (FILE) Wrestler Chris Benoit attends a press conference to promote Wrestlemania XX at Planet Hollywood March 11, 2004 in New York City. Benoit, his wife Nancy and their son Daniel, 7-years-old, were found dead June 25, 2007 at their home in Georgia.  (Photo by Peter Kramer/Getty Images)

This is my first and only article about this subject and I know it's nearly two years and I should put it to rest so here it is. I see Bleacher Report as an open forum and a place to write freely, so this is the best way to vent my frustration.

June 25th 2007, I was sixteen years old and just entering my house after a hard days school and the first thing I hear from my brother (a non wrestling fan) is that Chris Benoit a role model to so many has passed away the day before. I didn't believe him or more didn't want to believe him, my favourite wrestler since the age of thirteen had died.

I more sad than anything else as I had been an avid fan for over three years and I watched the Wrestle Mania (XX) that he made it to the top of the mountain and won the World Heavyweight title. But that sadness was short lived.

As the events wore on over the following days and weeks we later found out that the events surrounding his death were more sinister. To make matters worse was during the actual Raw after the Benoit memorial show they had to apologise for it. That was the moment that wrestling became real (not the scripted kind) and primarily died, for myself anyway.

The main reason for this is thorugh something that I personally have passion for watching and enjoy to a high degree, can only get mainstream by that I mean pop culture recognition by a major tragedy occuring within that industry.

Also, when I watched so many stories on news channels after news channels I was bewildered by how much of a story it was. If it was to happen anywhere else to anyone would it have gotten months upon months of debate? To me it was made into something much much bigger than it was.

All of this ruckus and speculation was enough to make myself a loyal fan of wrestling for over nine years (at that point) turn away from wrestling for a year and a half. The events that occured and the mass hysteria throughout summer time of 2007 had made me lose all faith and love in an industry that had entertained me for so long.

So, I guess that's my rant over and it doesn't translate well onto paper but it's out now and time to move on.

- Steven D