Tributes and encouraging messages are pouring in for WWE Universal champion Roman Reigns who disclosed on Monday night that he was relinquishing the title after disclosing that the leukaemia he had been battling for 11 years had returned.
Thirty-three year-old Reigns, real name Joe Anoa’i, made the emotional announcement live on “Monday Night Raw”, saying: “My real name is Joe, and I’ve been living with leukemia for 11 years. And unfortunately, it’s back. And because the leukemia’s back, I cannot fulfill my role … and I’m gonna have to relinquish the Universal championship.”
Immediately after the announcement, tributes and powerful messages started to pour in from fellow wrestlers, fans and wrestling stakeholders.
Read some of the words culled from social media pages of some of his colleagues:
‘Courage – strength in the face of pain or grief.’ You have given us your everything including a courageously vulnerable moment. We, your WWE family, give you all of our love and support.
“After watching the beginning of WWE Raw last night, I’ve come to the conclusion that we all should be grateful that we woke up this morning to experience life to its fullest. Make each day count, because you never know what life will throw at you.”
“I’ve never seen the air sucked out of a locker room like it was tonight. Our thoughts and prayers are with Roman and his family.”
No Way Jose
Fighting leukemia is tough,
But they don’t make them tougher than Roman Reigns
He will beat this again
Come on #bigdog. After your another fight, let’s do this again.
Our job gives us the ability to portray larger than life characters who possess super human qualities and characteristics.
After hearing his story it’s very apparent that Joe Anoa’i is just as much of a superhero as “Roman Reigns” is
Devastating news coming from #raw last night, Roman Reigns is an inspiration and a role model for so many around the world inside and outside of this job, thoughts are with him and his family
I’m heartbroken. All my love and well wishes to Roman Reigns and his family