Almost a month ago, I mentioned on Cageside Seats that Irv Muchnick had exposed Dawn Marie Damatta to not be as charitable as she purported to be in the New York Times. A lot has happened in the meantime. Dawn Marie has written an open letter defending herself against accusations that her organisation Wrestlers Rescue is not completely on the up and up. But then suspiciously decided to sick her lawyers on the people who raised the genuine concerns, Mike Aldren and Irv Muchnick. The wrestling community has largely leapt to her defense, such as Missy Hyatt and Lance Storm, despite the worrying lack of transparency behind her project. Meanwhile, the wrestling media largely kept quiet about the controversy.
The queen bee of the wrestling media, Dave Meltzer, finally broke his silence on the August 12th Wrestling Observer Radio Show:
Dave Meltzer: The only thing I know about Dawn Marie is that she spent, or her foundation, did donate three thousand dollars to Steve Williams and the reason they didn't do, that Steve didn't get a voice box is because Steve was terminally ill and he instead asked that the money that was raised to be used to pay his astronomical medical bills, so that's what they did. So it's not like he never got any money. The deal was she didn't give the money to him, she paid the money to the hospital to help defray his huge medical bills, which is what he asked for her to do.
Bryan Alvarez: So that pretty much settles that. It's been talked about for a while now and very, very good stuff that has come out of that...
Dave Meltzer: I mean there's more, but that's the gist, cos I mean that was the thing that everyone was calling into question.... I talked to a couple of friends of Steve Williams and they all have the same story that Steve had told him that directly and so I'm relatively certain that it's true.
I'm not so sure I'm as naive as Bryan Alvarez to believe that Dave Meltzer's second hand sources "pretty much settles" the whole controversy. We still do not know how much Dawn Marie's organisation Wrestlers Rescue collected in total for "Dr Death" Steve Williams and whether she gave him a fair share of the proceeds. If she had absolutely nothing to hide and had only managed to raise $3,000 for him, then why all the lack of transparency and why did she immediately sick her lawyers on Mike Aldren and Irv Muchnick as soon as their concerns became public, instead of providing them with evidence that their concerns were misplaced?