As a transgender woman myself, I’m routinely delighted by the rising tide of transgender folks at every level of pro wrestling, from the likes of Dark Sheik and Still Life With Apricots and Pears making waves on the indies, through to AEW dangling the possibility of an all-trans finals to their Women’s World Championship Eliminator Tournament with Nyla Rose and VENY on opposite sides of the bracket, but never before, to my knowledge, has a former WWE Superstar come out as trans.
Today, Gabbi Tuft changed all that, and you can read her press release below.
GABE TUFT, A FORMER WWE SUPERSTAR, (Ring Name “TYLER REKS”) MAKES HER LONG-AWAITED GENDER REVEAL EXCLUSIVELY ON EXTRA TV Gabe Tuft was once the WWE Superstar “Tyler Reks”, a tough pro wrestler who made opponents quiver. To the cheer of millions of adoring fans, she battled in iconic WWE mega TV events seen across the wrestling world such as RAW, SMACKDOWN and WRESTLEMANIA.. But Gabbi gave up all of that WWE fanfare to spend precious time with two of her most loyal fans: her wife Priscilla and their little daughter. To Gabe, getting more time to be a ever-present parent to her daughter was priceless. It was the main reason why she left the WWE. Together with Priscilla they created “BODY SPARTAN”, a fitness company with an app to positively transform the body, mind and spirit of men and women through targeted video workouts, nutritional programs and motivational sessions. Despite her successes during and after her WWE career, Gabbi was still wrestling with a secret persona dwelling deep within her. This is a persona she has been hiding in the loud silence of her soul since childhood. Finally, with the blessing of her loving wife Priscilla, Gabe is ready to reveal who she really is. Now known as she/her: A beautiful, wise, witty and wonderful woman. Gabbi is about to share her thrilling story of gender transitioning from a former WWE Superstar, Body Builder, Fitness Guru, Motivational Speaker and Motorcycle Racer to a fun loving and fabulous female. She has been finally set free and ready to rule her world. This is a story wrestling and other sports fans, friends and followers must not miss, especially many in the LGBTQ community dealing with challenging transgender issues who Gabbi and Priscilla are willing to help. Tune in to Extra for this EXCLUSIVE story on February 5, 2021. Check here: https://extratv.com/pages/when-its-on/ your local listing.
The release is, well... it’s not the way I would have written it, let’s say, and mired in outdated and cisnormative notions of what exactly a gender transition means and how it should be treated (the amount of times she’s deadnamed and misgendered, yikes), but I’ve had a grin on my face all day all the same.
UPDATE: A corrected press release was sent out today (Feb. 4) that fixes most of the gendered language and this article has been updated with the new text. I’m still smiling!
Ms. Tuft hasn’t wrestled (per Cagematch) since a tag team match with her WWE partner Curt Hawkins against Kevin Matthews and present-day AEW star Lance Archer for New Jersey’s Pro Wrestling Syndicate in 2014, and I have no idea if she’s got any gas left in the tank for nor interest in dealing with professional wrestling, but I’d love to see her make a comeback.
In any case, welcome aboard, Gabbi!