Even though professional wrestlers are involved in scripted entertainment, they are still like any other pro athlete. They've had to train super hard, work for years to achieve their dream jobs, and have had to overcome a lot of adversity in life.
Fans need to respect what these athletes do. Because even though they're professionally trained to minimize the damage they inflict on one another, they still sacrifice their bodies for your joy and entertainment.
And a lot of these wrestlers have had to overcome plenty of early obstacles and difficulties in life. Some of them have been able to shrug off the hardships they've had to encounter, but others have had their lives completely damaged by it.
We've seen guys like Triple H, Randy Orton, and John Cena become major fan favorites and iconic wrestlers throughout the years, but so many other wrestlers you'll see on this list have had it much harder than other big-named guys.
Vince McMahon knows this. There are many reasons why WWE has a Wellness Policy put into place; it's not out of the ordinary for Superstars of the past or present to need help after going through such hardships and tragedies in their careers.
It's great that the WWE makes sure they look after their own, and because of that, we're not seeing wrestlers' lives fall apart as much as we were 15-20 years ago.
But unfortunately, we can't go back in time and prevent such tragedies from happening to some of these wrestlers. Here are the top 15 wrestlers who've had to overcome plenty of difficulties in life.
19 Perry Saturn
A Superstar who succeeded in ECW, WCW, and the WWE was able to do it all, no matter where he went. But sadly, one of his heroic acts resulted in an undeserved tragedy.
In 2004, he tried fighting off two men who were sexually assaulting a woman. Saturn came in to save her, but one of the men shot him in the neck and shoulder area with a handgun.
The events led to him becoming addicted to drugs and left him homeless for several years, before he overcame his addiction and found the help he needed. Considering he was only acting as a hero, it's horrible that he went through such terrible times.
17 Luna Vachon
She had two great runs in the WWE, and even had a run in WCW. Luna Vachon was one of the first female wrestlers to make a name for herself.
Sadly, she dealt with domestic violence from her boyfriend Dick Slater and had bipolar disorder.
Sadly enough, her house was burned down in 2009, and she lost some of her greatest wrestling memorabilia. She passed away in 2010, at just 48 years of age due to a drug overdose.
Another female wrestler who paved the way for Divas to make names for themselves, Sunny was an iconic figure in the WWE.
But her personal life was marred with issues. Bret Hart and Shawn Michaels were engaged in a real-life and storyline feud, partially due to her getting involved in a love triangle.
15 Dynamite Kid
The man who was a success in WWE and NJPW dealt with many tragedies outside of the ring
His wife Michelle and her kids left him due to allegations that he was abusive. She threatened suicide and even said she'd consider killing their children so they wouldn't have to deal with his abuse.
On top of that, Billington's life has only suffered more horror: He's been told he can't walk again and needs a wheel chair after losing the use of his left leg almost two decades ago and has suffered multiple strokes in the last several years.
13 Jeff Hardy
Both the Hardy brothers provided immense entertainment with their dangerous stunts in the WWE, but sadly, both of them have had to deal with so much outside the ring, it's a huge reason they're no longer with the company.
Hardy dealt with multiple issues involving drugs and alcohol. He wasn't allowed to board a flight in Nashville for being intoxicated, and was arrested in 2009 for being in possession of steroids, cocaine and other drugs.
12 Hulk Hogan
It's hard to forget the incidents Hogan has had, most recently with his racial rant that went viral and led to his termination of employment with the WWE.
It's also hard to not feel sympathetic for a man who has been embroiled in many controversies. Hogan lost plenty of his fortune after his divorce with his first wife, Linda.
He had a adult-oriented tape released after having an affair with one of his close friend's wives, and his son Nick was involved in a serious car crash with his friends (using Hulk's car) which left a friend paralyzed.
11 Shawn Michaels
Shawn Michaels had to retire in 1998 after a severe back injury and that was one early tragedy he had to encounter.
He also found himself in many backstage feuds with the likes of Bret Hart and others. The Montreal Screwjob didn't buy Michaels a lot of love from fans, either.
10 Miss Elizabeth
She stole the hearts of every wrestling fan during her career, but sadly, Miss Elizabeth lived a life more difficult than imaginable outside the ring.
Her and Macho Man Randy Savage had a real-life marriage which ended in divorce, much to the dismay of wrestling fans. She then had a real-life relationship with Lex Luger, who was arrested for domestic violence on her. Shortly after, she died by acute toxicity.
Her untimely death was one of the most devastating moments the wrestling world went through. She was such an idol to so many of us.
Her fans will never forget all of the wonderful memories she provided for them.
It's very unfortunate that WWE's first true Diva Superstar has been treated as if she were nothing at all.
Her childhood was filled with tragedies: Her parents divorced when she was four, an older teacher kissed her inappropriately, and her father was an alcoholic.
Chyna had a real-life relationship with Triple H, but he broke her heart when he left for Stephanie McMahon, causing major heat between the two. She's struggled with substance abuse problems.
The WWE pretends she doesn't exist and has been estranged by her family. Here's hoping that WWE will recognize one of their best and put her in the Hall of Fame, her rightful home.
6 6. Ric Flair
He is the limousine riding, jet flying, kiss stealing, wheeling dealing, son of a gun and his shoes cost more than anyone's house!
Ric Flair is one of the most accomplished wrestlers of all-time, but he's had some of the worst misfortunes imaginable. For starters, his son Reid died several years ago following on a drug overdose.
Flair's personal life has also been troubling, having gone through four divorces. Flair also had to file for bankruptcy after his own financial business failed.
5 Bret Hart
Bret Hart was on top of the world as one of WWE's best and most finest Superstars during the 1990s, but that all changed at the 1997 edition of Survivor Series in Montreal.
The Execution of Excellence was double-crossed by McMahon and lost his championship to Shawn Michaels in his home country, and that was not the way the match was scripted. So with that, Hart had a bitter leave, failed in WCW and had to retire due to injuries.
Then, he lost his younger brother Owen in an accident at Over the Edge, 1999.
Hart finally patched things up with HBK and McMahon in 2010, but was recently diagnosed with prostate cancer, adding another tragedy to his complicated life.
4 Lex Luger
One of the most iconic names to the wrestling industry of both the WWE and WCW in the 80s and 90s saw his life get out of control once his career dwindled down.
Lex Luger was arrested and tarnished his reputation for domestic violence on his real-life girlfriend, Miss Elizabeth. Several weeks later, Luger found his girlfriend dead in their home.
Then in 2007, Luger suffered a severe spinal stroke, and for an amount of time, was a quadriplegic. Luckily, he was able to recover as best possible.
3 Jake "The Snake" Roberts
One of the most legendary Superstars of all time sadly saw his life fall apart once his career in the WWE ended.
Jake Roberts went through years and years of substance and alcohol abuse, severely jeopardizing his own life. Luckily, he moved in with former WCW star Diamond Dallas Page, who has been given plenty of credit for turning him into a sober, healthy man.
Kamala was one of the coolest and most unique wrestling characters during his time, and always knew how to entertain crowds. His current life story is also one of the most heart-breaking imaginable.
In 1993, his sister and stepdaughter were murdered, and Kamala was able to fight for the killer to get prison in life.
His left knee was amputated in 2011 due to complications from diabetes and he won't be able to appear in a WWE ring again.
1 Scott Hall
On the bright side of this depressing article, the number one man on our list has one of the great comeback stories in the history of the WWE.
Scott Hall's life was always filled with horrendous moments. He was devastated when he shot and killed a man outside a bar in 1983, though it was allegedly in self defense. Hall's wife divorced him due to his inability to get over his substance abuse programs.
Hall had multiple breakdowns in the WWE, most infamously on a flight back into the United States from the United Kingdom. Hall also got arrested in 1998 for assaulting an older woman.
He was arrested several more times and had years of abuse and severe alcohol problems. Thankfully, Hall has been able to get over his problems and was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame in 2014.
Hopefully his epic reunion with the nWo at WrestleMania 31 is a sign that he's completely healthy now.
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