UPDATE: According to Sean Ross Sapp of Fightful, Rotunda suffered a heart attack on Thursday which led to his passing.
I was given permission to reveal that earlier this year Windham Rotunda (Bray Wyatt) got COVID that exacerbated a heart issues.
There was a lot of positive progress towards a return and his recovery. Unfortunately today he suffered a heart attack and passed away.
— Sean Ross Sapp of Fightful.com (@SeanRossSapp) August 25, 2023
EARLIER: The wrestling world suffered a tremendous loss on Thursday. In a tweet from WWE chief content officer Triple H, it was announced that Windham Rotunda passed away earlier in the day. Rotunda, who was best known for his time in WWE as Bray Wyatt, was 36 years old.
Just received a call from WWE Hall of Famer Mike Rotunda who informed us of the tragic news that our WWE family member for life Windham Rotunda – also known as Bray Wyatt – unexpectedly passed earlier today. Our thoughts are with his family and we ask that everyone respect their…
— Triple H (@TripleH) August 24, 2023
The cause of death was unclear. Rotunda had not appeared on television for WWE in several months, as he was expected to have a match at WrestleMania 39 against Bobby Lashley. However, due to an unspecified health issue, he was taken off the card. His status was up in the air for months, and earlier in August, Sean Ross Sapp of Fightful reported that Wyatt was both “getting closer to being cleared” and in the process of recovering from an illness that “was both career and life threatening.”
After today's update, it was explained to Fightful that the illness that Bray Wyatt is actively recovering from was both career and life threatening.
It's great to hear that things are looking much better 🙏 pic.twitter.com/pR1kICvIxt
— Sean Ross Sapp of Fightful.com (@SeanRossSapp) August 10, 2023
Rotunda joined WWE back in 2009 as part of its developmental program before making his main roster debut with The Nexus under the name Husky Harris in 2010. After going back down to Florida Championship Wrestling, Rotunda returned to the main roster as Bray Wyatt, the leader of the Wyatt Family, and while the faction eventually broke up, he continued to perform on the main roster. He was a one-time WWE Champion and a two-time WWE Universal Champion.
Rotunda came from a long line of professional wrestlers, as his grandfather, father, and two of his uncles all stepped into the squared circle. His brother, Taylor, spent more than a decade with WWE as Bo Dallas.