Back in May, when WWE released a slew of people, including fan favorite Damien Sandow, rumors were swirling that longtime ring announcer Lilian Garcia would be among those laid off, especially considering she wasn’t touring or on television at that time. But the Grammy-distributing Garcia — who also has a longstanding side job as a singer — returned to TV soon after and looked like she would be sticking around. Until now.
On Monday, Garcia posted the following image of herself and her father to Instagram, with an accompanying message revealing that she would be coming off the road and no longer working full-time for WWE going forward, in part to care for her ailing father.
View this post on Instagram
I’ve been getting a lot of tweets and messages asking where I have been and if I’m coming back to WWE, so I wanted to let you know what has been going on and why I have been silent. I've been through so many emotions lately that they literally have kept me up at night. As most of you know, my father has been battling with two different types of cancer. He hasn’t been doing as well as we hoped, THEREFORE, I will not be traveling weekly with WWE any longer. I will be looking to take on work closer to where I live so that I don't have to be on the road weekly away from him. He truly needs me, and I need this time with him. I ask that you please continue prayers for my father and my family. It has been a magical 15-year career at WWE, and WWE Universe, I can't thank you enough for all your love and support! I felt you every step of the way! I also want to thank the amazing WWE Superstars, whom many of them have become my friends! You are an incredible group of people with SO much talent! It has been such an honor to introduce you to the ring and watch your superior athleticism week after week. Thank you to the crew & production staff on the road and in the offices. I've seen you work so hard! You really are the glue that keeps it all together! Lastly, thank you WWE for this incredible ride that I never wanted to get off. I've had experiences beyond my imagination. I thank you for not only allowing me to use my voice as an announcer but also sharing it to sing around the world. What an honor! I will cherish the memories forever. This is not goodbye as I will ALWAYS be part of the WWE family & hope you all will follow me on social media to share in my next chapter. I thank you & I love you!!
“As most of you know, my father has been battling with two different types of cancer. He hasn’t been doing as well as we hoped, THEREFORE, I will not be traveling weekly with WWE any longer. I will be looking to take on work closer to where I live so that I don’t have to be on the road weekly away from him. He truly needs me, and I need this time with him. I ask that you please continue prayers for my father and my family.”
Garcia has indeed been a fixture of WWE programming for the past 15 years. She debuted on Raw in August 1999, then gave a tearful goodbye to Madison Square Garden in September 2009 after a decade of ring announcing for the company, announcing she was retiring to pursue music full-time.
She ultimately returned to the company in 2011 and has stayed ever since. Apart from Howard Finkel, she is one of the longest-tenured ring announcers in WWE history.
Former Total Divas cast member JoJo has been doing more main roster ring announcing as of late, as has NXT ring announcer Greg Hamilton. They are the two people most likely to pick up the dates left behind by Garcia’s departure.