Former pro wrestler Ultimate Warrior dies at 54

Posted at 10:26 AM, Apr 09, 2014
and last updated 2014-04-09 11:27:20-04

(AP) — One of the professional wrestling world’s most iconic figures has died at the age of 54, the WWE said.

The organization announced that James Hellwig, better known as former pro wrestler The Ultimate Warrior, died Tuesday night, though no details about a cause were given.

Hellwig was one of pro wrestling’s biggest stars in the late 1980s, beating Hulk Hogan in a memorable match at Wrestlemania in 1990.

He was in the spotlight again earlier this week, making appearances at the latest Wrestlemania in New Orleans and on “Monday Night Raw,” and being inducted into the WWE Hall of fame.

“Every man’s heart one day beats its final beat. His lungs breath their final breath, and if what that man did in his life makes the blood pulse through the body of others and makes them believe deeper in something larger than life, then his essence, his spirit will be immortalized,” the wrestler said Monday in an eerie philosophical commentary on mortality.

WWE chairman Vince McMahon tweeted: “We are all so sad the Ultimate Warrior has passed away. Our heart is with his wife Dana and his two daughters.”

ultimate warrior wrestling hall of fame

Former professional wrestler The Ultimate Warrior commands the crowd’s attention just one day before his death on April 8, 2014. (Photo: WWE)