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5.23.2009

Remembering Owen...

I found this photo while Google surfing. That's the late great Owen Hart in the midst of a mini scrum between Slam! Wrestling's John Powell, myself (with the shaggy bowl cut) and Notorious T.I.D. with the blonde caesar and specs. It was early 1998 and after having interviewed him several times before, this was the first time Owen was visibly frustrated.

He was tired of answering questions about Bret in WCW and the departure of The Bulldog and Anvil. His friend Brian Pillman passed away just a few short months previously, and the man who was the top of the once mighty Hart Foundation was now just looking to maintain a strong spot on the shows.

There was a feeling amongst the wrestling media that the WWF would either rush Owen to the Heavyweight title and convince fans he was truly greater than his big brother ever was, or push him into obscurity. Of course, neither happened.

Owen was so loved by his peers and even management, he pushed through that difficult time with grace.

I spoke to Owen Hart on the phone and by email several times after that interview, but that interview was one of the last times I saw him face to face.

Today, May 23rd marks the ten year anniversary of the day Owen Hart was taken away too soon. He was on his way to the ring, for an Intercontinental Title match (where he was apparently booked to go over) against The Godfather. O Show friend and long time referee Jim Korderas was in the ring when the tragic accident happened.

Today, I'm the same age Owen was when he died (33) and like he did, I feel like I still have lot of living left to do.

Owen Hart was a dedicated family man, underrated ring technician and a stand up human being. In the cut throat, rumor spreading, heat seeking world of pro wrestling, NOBODY ever had a bad word to say about Owen.

10 years. In the blink of an eye. Just like that. Owen lived every moment like it was special. When remembering Owen Hart today and into the future, remember that philosophy.

Take care.


2 comments: on "Remembering Owen..."

D. Ross said...

This week is the birthday of my older brother who died from a heart attack at the age of 32. No warning. Nothing. The last conversation we had was about wrestling as we always did. He was a huge Canadian mark. Bret, Benoit, Owen. Its sad that of those three two are dead and one had his career ended prematurely. We never get a second chance to say goodbye to folks.

It sucks wondering what Owen would be doing if he were alive today. Its also sad that so many people missed out on seeing him perform. How many more guys would he have inspired? How many would he have trained? We'll never know and that's just sad.

Zyrus The Vyrus said...

Great tribute man. I remember hearing about Owen and crying as a kid. It made me grow up as a wrestling fan and made me realize that these people are just that, people. Good article man.