Today’s news is perhaps expected, but no less tragic, as the body of former WWE Superstar Shad Gaspard has been recovered on Venice Beach, near where he disappeared on Sunday. We did our best to hold out hope when the story broke on Monday that he had disappeared, but that hope was in short supply yesterday when the search for Gaspard was called off.
According to TMZ, a citizen called the police at 1:30 AM today to report that they’d found a body near Venice Pier. Officers recovered the body and a few hours later confirmed it to be Shad Gaspard. He was 39 years old.
It seems that Gaspard’s last act was to save his 10-year-old son, who was swimming with him when they were both caught in a riptide. When a lifeguard reached the two of them, reports ESPN, Gaspard told the lifeguard, “Take my son.” His son later added, “Dad told me to push off to the guy,” meaning the lifeguard. By the time the boy was safely ashore, Shad Gaspard had disappeared under the waves.
Shad Gaspard competed on Tough Enough in 2002 and then signed with WWE, where he worked until 2010. He’s best remembered as half of the tag team Cryme Time with JTG. Since leaving WWE, he’s wrestled on the independent scene and also found a career as an actor and stunt performer, working on films including Black Panther and Birds of Prey.
Our thoughts today are with Gaspard’s family and loved ones.