For anybody who has ever followed the WWE, then called the World Wrestling Federation, during the Attitude Era, there was a lot of larger-than-life characters from your Rocks to your Stone Colds to your Mick Foleys.
However, it was not a total sausage-fest during that time for “The 9th Wonder of the World” Joanie Laurer aka Chyna also stood supreme during that time. So with that said April 20th was a dark day for wrestling fans, Chyna was found dead in her bedroom at the age of 46. The cause of death is not yet known but the so far the prevailing theory is a drug overdose.
Now I can go on about her accomplishments, like her being the only female WWE Intercontiental Champion or the first woman to enter the Royal Rumble. I could go on about her downward spiral, like her being on The Surreal Life and that blow-up with X-Pac, her forays in adult films or her drug use. However, I want to talk about a specific part.
This is a picture of me with her at Horrorhound Weekend taken March 18th, 2016. A little over a month before she died and I want to talk about my personal experience with her.
So Horrorhound Weekend usually falls on or around my birthday and I bring a bunch of birthday cards for the guests to sign. It’s a great ice-breaker, what can I say? So I make my way to her booth and give my card to Chyna to sign. I go in my spiel about how it’s my birthday and how I’ve done this for a couple years and blah blah blah. Chyna took the card and sign the card, wishing me a happy birthday and usually that would be that. But she actually started to talk to me and asking me questions about my birthday and stuff like that. She then asked if the other guests have been charging to sign my cards and I said yes, I know it was going to happen so I don’t mind but Chyna told me to pick one of her 8 X 10’s and she’ll autograph that for free. So I did and she did. We talked a bit more and then she gave me a hug and that was finally that.
So when people like to remember Chyna for her matches or her stuff with DX, Eddie Guerrero or what have you. Whether people remember Chyna for her lows, to me I’ll always remember that little bit of kindness she showed me at Horrorhound. I’ll remember how sweet she was to me and to the rest of anybody who came up to her line and saw her. I’ll remember Chyna trying to get her life fully back together and looking great at Horrorhound. That’s what I wish to remember when I think of Chyna.