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During Kanyon’s generation, being openly gay was a death sentence for grapplers, and homosexual-based gimmicks were usually given to straight wrestlers and designed to get “heat” rather than inspire those in the audience who were LGBTQ+ themselves. If someone had known about his suicide attempt in 2003 and tried to help him, would it have worked? Now, we DO have @Parrow_ @SonyaDevilleWWE, @EFFYlives, @realfredrosser, but Chris Kanyon put his boot in the door for others. Your email address will not be published. He would become one-half of one of WCW’s worst gimmick matches when he faced Buff Bagwell in the Judy Bagwell on a Forklift Match at New Blood Rising that August. It’s a tragic shame that a man who loved the industry with every fiber of his being was never given the opportunity to truly inspire in the ring the people he was forced to suppress being a part of – the LGBTQ+ community. He would then further confuse fans by retracting these statements and admitting that he was in fact gay but stopped short of re-accusing the WWE of firing him for this reason. Powered by Minute Media © 2020 All Rights Reserved. The case would almost literally follow the wrestler to the grave. The failure of his career and the turmoil of his personal life sent him on a downward spiral that would result in his death. Managed by James Vanderburg, he began feuding with the undefeated Glacier and made his in-ring debut as the masked monster at WCW Uncensored in March 1997. In the Spring of 2000, Vince Russo had taken over and Kanyon returned as an ally of DDP, before once again turning on him to join Russo’s New Blood faction. For decades, as detailed in his autobiography, Wrestling Reality: The Life and Mind of Chris Kanyon, Wrestling’s Gay Superstar (2004), Chris Kanyon, real name Christopher Morgan Klucsarits, fought fierce internal struggles to keep his homosexuality private – from bookers, from other wrestlers, from the fans. Booker T had won the US title before the WWF purchase, beating Rick Steiner at WCW Greed that March, but who also now possessed the WCW World Heavyweight Championship, having defeated Scott Steiner on the last episode of Nitro. Reportedly, Chris Kanyon became very depressed towards the end of his life. Wrestling Reality: The Life and Mind of Chris Kanyon, Wrestling’s Gay Superstar. Tragedy would strike again soon after recovery, however. If his bipolar condition had been diagnosed sooner would he have sought long-term treatment? Mental disorders are like icebergs; what we can see on the surface is only a small fraction of what exists below. Kanyon began his professional wrestling career in 1994 when he appeared as a jobber in the WWE against such future Hall of Fame inductees as Shawn Michaels and Kevin Nash. By the end of 1996, Kanyon returned to the road for WCW, but this time under a mask as Mortis. It was 10 years ago on Sunday, April 2, 2010, that many wrestling fans found out the horrible news – Chris Kanyon, who competed for ECW, WCW, WWE, and TNA/IMPACT Wrestling, had passed away. After he was released by WWE in 2004, he began a publicity stunt where he accused the company of firing him because he was gay. Chris Kanyon was found dead in his New York City apartment by his brother on April 2d, 2010. He finally retired from the business for good in 2007. First, he sued World Wrestling Entertainment, accusing the organization of trying to deny him health care benefits. Kanyon would temporarily leave WCW to do work as a stuntman for the Jesse Ventura Story, which came out in 1999. All of this pressure is amplified even further if a wrestler suffers from manic depression, also known as bipolar disorder. The two had defeated the APA (Farooq & Bradshaw) on SmackDown that August (though lost them 12-days later at SummerSlam 2001 to the Brothers of Destruction, The Undertaker & Kane). But Mortis had run its course, and following a loss to DDP for the US title once again on WCW Thunder on February 12, 1998, Mortis was taken off television. In 1995 he was signed by WCW and for much of the year worked as a low card wrestler on their lesser shows, until he was paired with Mark Starr (ironically his first opponent in WCW in singles action) in the tag team Men At Work, where they dressed like construction workers. James Mitchell saw promise in the young wrestler and helped further his training by sending him to work with the Wild Samoans and the Fabulous Moolah & Mae Young. Chris Kanyon is a perfect example of just how damaging an unseen mental illness can be, especially for someone whose livelihood involves being in the spotlight. After Chris Kanyon died, it was revealed that he had been working on a biography of his life with writer Ryan Clark. Chris Kanyon was diagnosed with bipolar disorder, a mental illness that is marked by episodes of mania and depression. It’s not public knowledge who his ashes were given to. Sound off in the comments section below! The feud dissolved, but Kanyon was one of the few WCW stars to move over to WWF and debuted that July as part of The Alliance. Called “Wrestling Reality,” the book was released in 2011. The Details of the Chris Kanyon Death Story . In singles, Mortis faired slightly better – he picked up televised wins over the likes of Juventud Guerrera, Psicosis, and Ernest “The Cat” Miller, and had earned a WCW United States title match against Diamond Dallas Page and WCW World Television title match against Booker T on Monday Nitro. In his early forrays into indie wrestling, he tagged with future WCW workmate Billy Kidman in a tag team based around them being hockey players. His hiatus wouldn’t last long as he would appear for several benefit shows in the wake of Hurricane Katrina in 2005 followed by what amounted to cameo appearances in TNA and PWG. Kanyon, who had only retired three years previously in 2007, had struggled for decades as a closeted homosexual, and while it was known within the wrestling industry amongst close friends, it wasn’t until after his release from WWE in 2004 that he finally came out publicly. Kanyon ended up re-signing with WCW in early 2001 and returned to feud with DDP, but then something happened – WCW was sold to rivals, WWF. During a reconditioning stint with WWE’s developmental in Ohio Valley Wrestling (OVW) in May of 2002, he injured his shoulder and required further surgery. Students : Trained David Arquette, Dennis Rodman, Eric Young, Jay Leno and Karl Malone. Have a comment about Chris Kanyon? Chris Kanyon returned to WCW in early 1999 and helped his former Flock mates Raven and Saturn win the WCW World Tag Team titles, before leaving the group to join DDP’s new stable, The Jersey Triad, alongside Bam Bam Bigelow. Following a loss to Harlem Heat on WCW Saturday Night in May of that year, Men At Work were dissolved and Chris Kanyon disappeared from WCW television. He ultimately took his own life because he couldn’t live with both acting and being treated differently based on his condition or because of who he loved. The new alliance was short-lived, however, and Kanyon finally turned on Saturn and joined Raven’s unit of misfits. He took his own life in 2010 at the age of 40. His career spanned 15 years with his longest tenure being in WCW where he held the WCW World Tag Team Championship twice, with Diamond Dallas Page and Bam Bam … His body was found by his brother Ken Klucsarits. WWE Great Balls of Fire 2017: Alexa Bliss-Sasha Banks Should End in Double Turn, WWE Great Balls of Fire 2017: Ranking Matches Based on Predictability, WWE Great Balls of Fire 2017: Final Picks and Predictions for Entire Match Card, Why Enzo Amore and Big Cass Will Be Reunited Before WrestleMania 34. Reportedly, Chris Kanyon became very depressed towards the end of his life. Whether or not they believed the claims is unclear, but sadly Kanyon make good on his threat. — TheAtlanticVamp (@TheAtlanticVamp) April 3, 2020, Your email address will not be published. To make things worse, he suffered an allergic reaction to meds from the surgery and spent weeks in the hospital with fluid in his lungs. The book was released in November 2011 and while Kanyon states in the book that he wasn’t ashamed of his sexuality, he never came out publically during his wrestling days for fear that it would hurt his career.

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