Phoenix, AZ, United States (4E) – WWE star The Ultimate Warrior, born James Brian Hellwig, has died late Tuesday in Arizona.
According to TMZ, Warrior collapsed as he walked with his wife to their car, just outside a hotel in Arizona. He was pronounced dead upon arrival to a nearby hospital.
A statement posted on WWE’s official website reads, “WWE is shocked and deeply saddened to learn of the passing of one of the most iconic WWE Superstars ever, The Ultimate Warrior.”
It continued, “We are grateful that just days ago, Warrior had the opportunity to take his rightful place in the WWE Hall of Fame and was also able to appear at WrestleMania 30 and Monday Night Raw to address his legions of fans. WWE sends its sincere condolences to Warrior’s family, friends and fans.”
The famed heavyweight, who legally changed his name to Warrior in 1993, started his wrestling career in wrestling in 1987 after being an amateur bodybuilder for years. He is considered one of the top wrestlers in WWE history, having defeated Hulk Hogan and bagging the championship title at Wrestlemania VI.
Ultimate Warrior’s sudden death has left both his fans and colleagues in awe and sadness, with them taking to social media to express sentiments.
Vince McMahon, chairman of WWE, tweeted, “We are all so sad that the Ultimate Warrior has passed away. Our heart is with his wife Dana and his two daughters.”
Iconic wrestler and long-time rival Hulk Hogan tweeted, “RIP WARRIOR. only love.” He added, “We talked, both forgave each other, we hugged ,we shook hands as we told each other I love you, I am so sad, God bless his beautiful family.”
Chief brand officer of WWE Stephanie McMahon tweeted, “#RIPUltimateWarrior Your strength of character is to be admired. There will never be anyone like you. Your spirit lives on in your family.”
Fellow wrestler Kevin Nash wrote, “So happy I embraced Warrior with a hug when we saw each other backstage Saturday night. My heart goes out to his family. Always Believe.” Dave Bautista posted, “After all these years I finally got 2 tell him that me shaking the ropes was an homage 2 him. Blessed to have had that moment. #onelife”
Warrior is survived by his wife Dana, and two daughters Indiana Marin, 14, and Mattigan Twain, 12.