Bray Wyatt passed away at 36 on Thursday, August 24, 2023.
Bray Wyatt, real name Windham Rotunda, died at the age of 36. Wyatt was a three-time WWE world champion and two-time tag-team champion; he had not performed since January due to unspecified medical problems.
The wrestler had been suffering from an undisclosed health issue that had kept him out of the ring since February, but his family described his death as unexpected.
WWE content officer Triple H broke the news on social media, writing that Wyatt, real name Windham Rotunda, had “unexpectedly passed.”
The Rock, Dwayne Johnson, was among many who paid respect to the late actor.
Johnson said on X, formerly Twitter, that he was “heartbroken” and that he had “always had tremendous respect and love” for the wrestler.
“Loved his presence, promos, in-ring work, and connection with the @WWE universe,” he said. “Very unique, cool, and rare character, which is difficult to create in our crazy pro wrestling world.”
“I thought so highly of Bray Wyatt…,” WWE analyst Mick Foley continued. He was a great visionary, and one of the most captivating figures in wrestling history.”
Wyatt comes from a wrestling dynasty that includes his grandfather Blackjack Mulligan, father Mike Rotunda, and younger brother Bo Dallas.
Rotunda was a notable wrestling legend in his own right. He was known as IRS because of his gimmick as a tax collector from Washington DC who hounded wrestlers and fans as “tax cheats.”
Wyatt, who was born on May 23, 1987, in Brooksville, Florida, was a state wrestling champion in high school and received a football scholarship to Troy University.
However, he dropped out before graduation to pursue a career as a professional wrestler, making his professional debut in 2009.
He fought as Husky Harris, Alex Rotunda, Duke Rotundo, and The Fiend, among others.
As Bray Wyatt, he co-starred with Erick Rowan, Braun Strowman, and the late Luke Harper (aka Brodie Lee) as the villainous leader of a cult faction known as The Wyatt family.
After being let go by WWE in 2021, he made a long-awaited return last October at the pay-per-view Extreme Rules event, where he introduced a fresh version of his character.
According to Wrestling News, he had lately missed several months due to illness but was on his way back to the WWE before his death.
Last year, Wyatt broke character to talk about how he overcame his mental health issues, saying, “I lost my career.” I had lost my self-esteem. I lost two people who were very important to me. I became disoriented. Source BBC.com