The entire wrestling world is still struggling to process and cope with the shocking, tragic death of Windham “Bray Wyatt” Rotunda, which happened yesterday (Aug. 24) when the 36 year old former WWE champion suffered a heart attack.
From his legendary rivals to legends he never met to behind-the-scenes players and independent wrestlers he made time for, the wrestling world is reacting by remembering Rotunda as a collaborator, friend, mentor, or just someone they admired from afar.
Here’s another roundup of those tributes.
NOTE: Where people have quote-tweeted the news of Bray’s death or some other remembrance, or in cases where the full message doesn’t display in the tweet, we’ve cut & pasted their words and linked to their tweet.
Devastated by the news of the passing of Windham Rotunda. My heart goes out to the entire Rotunda family. Windham brought the best out of me in so many ways. I’m forever grateful for the moments we shared. A sad day for all those he reached around the world. RIP.— John Cena (@JohnCena) August 25, 2023
I’m just in shock. Extremely heart broken And at a loss for words. What I can say is what an amazing human being Windham is. An Amazing & kind friend. one of the most creative minds to ever walk this earth. Windham, you’ve brought so much joy and happiness to everyone around you. It’s going to take me some time to really process this. Sending my love to the Rotunda Family, Jojo & their babies. We love you Windham
I was thinking about Bray’s first promo after his return and how he wanted it to be unlike anything he had ever done before. He wanted it to be Windham. All of it was true. He was nervous. He didn’t want to disappoint. But more than anything he was excited to be back with his friends to do what he loved.
He was always creating.
He loved calling and talking for hours about obscure 90s made for TV horror movies or YouTube videos with 400 views that inspired him. He loved that “cover! spear! bray wins!” is a meme. He loved giving the fans pieces of a puzzle and joyfully watching as they assembled it. He truly loved that you all loved him.
I feel so lucky to have known him.
I will miss my friend very much. I don’t think I’ll ever fully comprehend that he’s gone. I wouldn’t be where I am without him. I love you, hoot.
Absolutely shattered to learn that my friend, Windham Rotunda, has passed away. It’s devastating to think he left us at only 36 years young. My condolences go out to his family, wife & children. I’m so sorry, my compeer. Miss you already. pic.twitter.com/AVNuOTjdsx— MATT HARDY (@MATTHARDYBRAND) August 24, 2023
Tragic news. Windham was an exceptional talent in the ring. His creation, Bray Wyatt, is an iconic character. Backstage, Windham was a lot of fun to be around, one of those people who never had a bad day. What a loss, both professionally and personally.
Not like this! You are my brother! My best friend! If I would have known that last week was going to be the last time we spoke, I would have told you how much I love you. How much you mean to me. How much you’ve changed my life, and how honored I am to call you family @Windham6 pic.twitter.com/UcCJ21U8eH— Jason Baker (@bakingjason) August 25, 2023
One of the most creative, unique minds I ever met in this industry.— Kevinn (@FightOwensFight) August 25, 2023
One of the first to welcome new guys with open arms.
One of the kindest.
One of the good ones…
We will miss you, Windham.
We love you.
Between your laugh and being able to witness your greatness every time you performed, you are truly irreplaceable.— Bayley (@itsBayleyWWE) August 25, 2023
I’m in disbelief just like everyone else. My heart goes out Windham’s whole family & everyone who knows & loves him.
You’ve got the whole world in your hand
Like all of us, I just can’t stop thinking about Windham and his family. I can’t believe it’s real. He was such a light and such electric energy. I can hear his laugh now. I get goosebumps remembering how the crowd would react when the lights would go out and the bass line would hit. He was so very special. Love to the Rotunda family.
I can’t believe I’m typing this. But RIP Windham. I knew you day 1 of moving to America, you were the biggest sweetheart and were loved by everyone who met you. I’m in shock.. sending all my love to the Rotunda family.— SARAYA (@Saraya) August 24, 2023
The world lost a good one today. Bray Wyatt’s story telling ability along with his unique creativity in the ring was a force that kept your eyes glued to the television screen. Windham Rotunda’s fun-loving, free spirit paired with his infectious laugh is what I will truly miss the most. My thoughts and prayers go out to the Rotunda family. Rest well my friend.
Sending every bit of love I have in me to the Rotunda family. I know way too many people who have lost a child. I can only imagine the pain. I remember Windham & his brother coming to shows w/their dad when they were kids. Absolutely devastating news.— Sean Waltman (@TheRealXPac) August 24, 2023
Just no fucking words. I love you Bray. I was like an uncle to them boys. I hate fucking death.— Dustin Rhodes (@dustinrhodes) August 24, 2023
The toughest part of this industry... is when you bond with people.... and then that bond is severed unexpectedly. RIP brudda.— Excellent Lee (@RealKeithLee) August 24, 2023
I was rooting for you just like you did for me. I already missed you... but this... it's painful. Safe journey my man.
Bray Wyatt is one of the most talented young wrestlers to ever come down the line. My heart goes out to his family.— JakeSnakeDDT (@JakeSnakeDDT) August 25, 2023
Rest in peace. pic.twitter.com/kj6ZBAGjCZ
The world witnessed a man with bountiful creative brilliance. I saw a kind man who always had time to spread the gift of laughter.— Byron Saxton (@ByronSaxton) August 25, 2023
I’ll miss calling you “Husky Rusky” and I’ll miss hearing the greeting of “Sax the Max.” Our industry was better because we had you in it #BrayWyatt pic.twitter.com/0DmjsI3BEY
I just heard Bray Wyatt has left this earth…Breaks my heart. An amazing human in & out of the ring. My time with him was so memorable. My deepest sympathies to his family & friends. We’ve lost another GREAT One. God Bless you Windham! You will be sorely missed. RIP Brother. DDP pic.twitter.com/R2mgWXKgWk— Diamond Dallas Page (@RealDDP) August 25, 2023
I am sadden by the news My condolences to the family of Windham Rotunda aka Bray Wyatt RIP I’m gonna miss you my friend ❤️ pic.twitter.com/p44T8Hz9BL— Ron Killings (@RonKillings) August 25, 2023
Lost for words. RIP— RheaRipley_WWE (@RheaRipley_WWE) August 24, 2023
I’m absolutely stunned. Bray was a once in a generation storyteller and just an amazing human being. He was always so incredibly kind and welcoming. My thoughts and prayers go out to his friends and family.
Every time I was able to share a locker room with Bray Wyatt was a pleasure. Always willing to give advice or just shoot the breeze and tell fun stories on the road.— PRIME Alexander (@CedricAlexander) August 24, 2023
My and family and I send out our prayers to the Rotunda family
Rest In Peace Wyndham #BrayWyatt
It’s unfair. It’s so goddamn unfair.— Matthew Rehwoldt (@DramaKingMatt) August 24, 2023
I have so many fond memories of Windham…such a warm presence.
I don’t have the strength to now but thoughts of him will always make me smile.
My love is with his family whom he loved so much.
One of the kindest people and creative minds that I have ever met! Man I'm gonna miss you— Athena is ROH and All Elite! (@AthenaPalmer_FG) August 24, 2023
Rest in peace and power, Windham! #RIPBrayWyatt
No man ever hugged me as tight as Windham did whenever we saw each other. I am completely devastated. Heartbroken.— nodaysoff FRED ROSSER III (@realfredrosser) August 24, 2023
He will always be remembered as one of the all time greats…— Matt Cardona (@TheMattCardona) August 24, 2023
Both in the ring and in the locker room.
I’m lucky to have spent time with him in both places.
My thoughts are with his family.
Love ya, Windham. Such a tried and true brother. Always made a bad day hilarious. Deepest sympathies for the Rotunda family.— Pat Buck (@buckneverstops) August 24, 2023
Rest in peace Windham Rotunda/Bray Wyatt. My god...I'm so sorry. My thoughts are with his family and children.....I have nothing else right now. Godspeed to you my friend.— Frankie Kazarian (@FrankieKazarian) August 24, 2023
All of The National Wrestling Alliance would like to send our condolences to the family, friends and fans of Windham Rotunda.— NWA (@nwa) August 24, 2023
May you make it to heaven a half an hour before the devil knows.— REAL1 (FKA Enzo Amore) (@real1) August 24, 2023
Love ya hoot. pic.twitter.com/lcnGpBRYYs
All my friends are hurting right now.— Aubrey Edwards (@RefAubrey) August 25, 2023
I never met Windham, but every story told reiterates how great he was.
The world lost a good one today.#RIPBrayWyatt
HEARTBROKEN I’m at a loss for words. One of the most creative minds to ever be in a WWE ring. Inspired all of us to continue to think out of the box. And know who we are. A REAL and HONEST SOUL… You will be missed deeply ️ R.I.P Bray Wyatt Prayer to your family pic.twitter.com/om27VMHshC— Briana Brandy (@TheVibeBri) August 24, 2023
Very sorry to hear of Bray Wyatt’s passing. It’s very sad. Unfortunately, I never got to know this man, but watching him perform, you can instantly tell he was extremely talented & creative. And more importantly hearing how great of a person he was. My condolences to his family. #RIPBray
Wow my heart just aches Windham was just the sweetest soul! Always super funny and forever grateful to call him a brother!!! Legends never die! These two beautiful souls are reunited!!! #ripbray pic.twitter.com/XMvP5m2C2w— Dana Brooke WWE (@DanaBrookeWWE) August 25, 2023
Years ago, Bray watched a match I had as an extra before doors at a smackdown. He talked to me for like 20 minutes afterwards. He was on top of the world at this point and didn't even have to acknowledge my existence. I think about his advice often. #ripbray— Caleb Konley (@CalebKonley) August 24, 2023
One memory that will always stick out in my head. Back in 2015, I was traveling with WWE as a rosebud just praying to get a job. Trying whatever I could to show how badly I wanted it. One person who always saw, appreciated and celebrated those efforts was Windham. One of the scarier things an independent wrestler can do is come in before SmackDown started and have a tryout match in front of the office and “the boys” (just anyone from the locker room who happened to be around the ring that day) and this particular day, I was GOING FOR IT, working my ass off in that ring and Windham stopped what he was doing to watch, to clap for me, to start a “Thea, Thea, Thea” chant [crying emoji] a group clap happened after the match.. he then went up to people in the office who were watching the tryout matches and in front of everyone said “SHE should be with us.”
He stuck up for his friends. Selfless and inspirational. The lump in my throat won’t go away. You’re so so missed.
JoJo, I can’t imagine what you and your family are going thru.. the man who had the whole world in his hands always wanted to give it to you and those beautiful kids. Sending so much love to you Jo. I’m so so sorry.