4 things you probably didn't know about the unfortunate death of Chris Benoit

Chris Benoit or his legacy still haven't been recognized by the WWE
Chris Benoit or his legacy still haven't been recognized by the WWE

On June 24th, 2007, the landscape of professional wrestling changed forever. Chris Benoit, who was one of the most beloved & respected wrestlers in the industry, was found dead in his home in Georgia. The discovery sent shockwaves throughout the world and dominated mainstream media outlets for months to follow.

Autopsy results showed that the 40-year-old veteran killed his wife on a Friday night, his son the following morning and then he committed suicide on Sunday. Reports suggest that Benoit's wife Nancy was found lying in a pool of blood wrapped in a towel while their son Daniel was found in his bed dead. 

The horrific details of this tragic event have mentally scarred wrestling fans worldwide, but there are still some less well-reported truths surrounding Benoit's death that I'll present to you today.

#4 Benoit had brain damage

Benoit and his family lived in Fayetteville, Georgia.
Benoit and his family lived in Fayetteville, Georgia.

According to medical examinations that took place after the tragedy, experts diagnosed Benoit with 'severe brain damage', stating that his brain resembled the nature of an '85-year old Alzheimer's patient'.

Brain damage, in many cases, can be the explanation for symptoms such as unnecessary aggression, depression, and erratic behavior. It is well known that concussions can lead to brain damage, and many former friends of Benoit stated he had a very laid-back attitude towards injuries in wrestling.

He saw it as an honor to wrestle each night, whether injured or not. Later it was confirmed that the damaged brain tissue in his body wasn't linked to any steroid use.

#3 His death changed WWE's wellness policy


Benoit wrestled 22 years in several companies.
Benoit wrestled 22 years in several companies.

The tragedy was a disaster for WWE's PR team and shone a direct bad light on the company's flawed drug testing. It forced WWE to take their Wellness policy more seriously by taking into consideration not just effects on health, but also mental fragility.

Superstar well-being was highlighted more, through personal care. Autopsy results showed that Benoit's body contained ten times the normal level of steroid testosterone despite passing a WWE steroid test 3 months earlier.

The autopsy also revealed that his heart was three times larger it should have been; he could have possibly died within the next ten months regardless.

Did you know that wrestlers today are ten times more likely to die before the age of 60 than NFL players? Why? Because of poor welfare precautions and constant concussions. This death forced WWE to take concussion more seriously, enforce substance regulations, and more rigorous drug testing.

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Edited by Staff Editor
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