We’re approaching the two year anniversary of Brodie Lee’s sudden, unexpected death from a rare lung condition, but in a lot of ways the wrestling world is still processing the loss of the independent & WWE veteran. Lee was finally getting the spotlight so many felt he’d long deserved in AEW. Then he was gone.
Is the grieving process aided by knowing Brodie’s widow Amanda Huber is working with AEW, and seeing her eldest son Brodie Jr. appear on our screens occasionally as Negative One of Dark Order — the group his father led? Doesn’t matter... because it seems to be helping ten year old Brodie Jr.
Mother and son spoke to Joshua Needelman of Men’s Health back in April about how. The ten year old, who last appeared on Dynamite two weeks ago when AEW was in his hometown of Rochester, New York, said:
“[Being involved] helps me because, like, I am ‘Carrying the Legacy’ of my dad. I do it because I love it. And my dad did it.”
It didn’t start that way, though. Asked about appearing on AEW’s Tribute to his dad back in December of 2020, Brodie Jr. admitted that wasn’t easy:
“Everybody’s watching me hold this belt [the TNT championship Lee held earlier that year]. It was amazing. But at the same time, it wasn’t.
“Holding the belt that my dad held, just to be in that moment, was … it was definitely … it was hard.”
Still, his drive remains to follow in his father’s footsteps:
“I want to be just like him.”
That drive can be too much, though. Needelman’s article includes a story of his mother catching Brodie Jr. searching wrestling topics — including his dad’s and his own highlights — when he was supposed to be doing homework. She put search blockers on his laptop and kept him away from shows for a while.
“I know he wants to be a wrestler. I fully support that. But if he changes his mind, I don’t want him to be stuck.”
She also pushes back on the common online criticism that AEW is exploiting her child, or that she’s profiting from his popularity:
“That’s not it, either! [AEW has handled their situation with] such grace and such kindness ... that I personally don’t feel like they’ve exploited him, or taken advantage of us. Everything’s always felt to me like it’s done with nothing but love. I think people are skeptical and pessimistic and assume that it’s a lot more sinister than it is.”
Admittedly though, she doesn’t have all the answers:
“Again, everybody would have a different way of handling this. I’m doing my best. I’m trying. There’s a good chance I’m screwing something up along the way.”
It’s apparently not what Brodie Sr. wanted for either of his sons, but Huber thinks he’d secretly love it:
“He would tell you he absolutely hates it. But I could tell you that deep down, in his heart, he would be just bubbling over the moon.”
The tears I felt welling up writing this and that you probably feel reading it are proof handling Lee’s loss is still hard for all of us. But whatever helps Huber or her boys should be cherished and uplifted.
Check out Josh Needelman’s entire profile, which includes more on Negative One’s training and how the entire AEW family is supporting him, at MensHealth.com.