Shockwaves are running through the world of professional wrestling with the news that Chris Candido has passed away at the age of 33.

Candido rose to fame in Smokey Mountain Wrestling alongside manager and girlfriend Tammy Sytch. The duo moved on to the WWF where Sytch was dubbed “Sunny” and Candido “Skip.” The duo were the fitness fanatics “The Bodydonnas.” Candido won the tag team title with Tom Prichard (as Zip).

Chris Candido. -courtesy TNA

After leaving the company Candido was a vital part of ECW as part of the triple threat stable with Shane Douglas and teaming with Lance Storm to win the tag titles. He also had a brief run in WCW, winning their cruiserweight title.

Candido had been on the comeback trail recently, excelling on the independent circuit and recently debuting in TNA. His last match was at Sunday’s Lockdown pay per view, where he broke his fibula and tibia and dislocated his ankle in a cage match teaming with Lance Hoyt against Apollo and Sonny Siaki. He had surgery Monday to repair his ankle and was at the Impact tapings Tuesday, managing The Naturals from a wheelchair.

Bob Ryder, who works for TNA Wrestling, reported on that Candido collapsed Thursday evening and was rushed to hospital. TNA posted the following message on their website “TNA joins the entire wrestling world in mourning the untimely death of Chris Candido on Thursday.”

Candido’s brother Jonny announced Friday that on the message board that Candido died of a blood clot, a complication from his surgery. He posted the following:

“I find it only fitting you hear the truth from me about the death of my best friend, brother, and soulmate. Chris died tonight due to a blood clot brought on by complications with his surgery.

“I just want to tell everyone that in their sorrow, find a way to be happy that he went out the way he wanted to … on top of the world, blonde, tan, and loving life up until the last minute. Every ounce of my brother loved this sport, and for him to go out 2 or 3 years ago wouldn’t have been a fitting end to the life of such a determined, passionate, and benevolent human being.

“I truly view my brother as an angel as will all who knew him. Thanks to everyone for all your positive press, Chris went out a happy man and will forever live on as the(one of) greatest of all time. He would have had it no other way.”

Top photo: Chris Candido with the headlock on Tracy Smothers, with Brian Hildebrand as the referee, and Tammy Sytch at ringside. Photo by Mike Lano,


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