Former female professional wrestling legend Mae Young passed away on Tuesday, January 14, at the age of 90. Young had been sick with an unspecified illness for a while and was admitted to the hospital on December 30, 2013. She took a turn for the worse and had to be placed on life support shortly after arriving at the hospital.
The life support was removed on January 9, 2014, and Young was taken to her home to be cared for by Hospice. Several inaccurate reports claimed that Young died that same day, but it was later discovered that she had not, and the reports were retracted.
Young was a pioneer in women's wrestling and trained many successful professional wrestlers. She was taught to wrestle by her brothers and even wrestled on the boy's wrestling team in high school. Young became a professional wrestler fresh out of high school and wrestled under the names "The Queen" and "The Great Mae Young".
Young made her first appearance on the WWF in 1999 with her longtime friend and fellow woman wrestler, The Fabulous Moolah. Young had trained Moolah and the two had built a lasting friendship over the years. They continued to appear on the WWF and later the WWE. In 2008, Young became the third woman to ever be inducted into the WWE Hall Of Fame.
Many of Young's colleagues and fans tweeted about her passing and the WWE released a statement saying,
"WWE is greatly saddened by the news that WWE Hall of Famer Mae Young, beloved member of the WWE family and oldest living squared circle personality, has passed at the age of 90. Johnnie Mae Young was truly one of the greatest female competitors to ever lace up a pair of boots. A proud competitor for three quarters of a century and valued part of WWE to her last day, Young truly blazed a path for future female grapplers beginning in the 1940s.”
“From the moment she first stepped through the ropes, Young established herself as one of the most active and successful female Superstars – including becoming the first U.S. Women’s Champion, carrying out one of the most storied rivalries of the time with the legendary Mildred Burke in 1954 and being among the first female competitors to tour post-war Japan.”
— WWE (@WWE) January 15, 2014
— Dwayne Johnson (@TheRock) January 15, 2014
— Scott M. Fishman (@smFISHMAN) January 15, 2014
The legendary Johnnie Mae Young has passed. The Oklahoman lead an amazing life. Her mental/physical toughness is an inspiration to all. RIP
— Jim Ross (@JRsBBQ) January 15, 2014
— Stephanie McMahon (@StephMcMahon) January 15, 2014
Mae Young will always be remembered as a trailblazer and true inspiration to many. She will also be missed deeply by her fans and everyone who knew her. RIP Mae Young.
Images via YouTube.