Dwayne Johnson, WWE, & More Pay Tribute To Darren Drozdov

Darren Drozdov

Dwayne Johnson and many others paid tribute to Darren Drozdov after the sad news of his passing on June 30th.

On June 30th, Darren Drozdov’s family issued a statement to announce that Drozdov had sadly passed away at the age of 54. The star signed with WWE in 1998, and his interview with Vince McMahon was documented in the film Beyond the Mat.

Known briefly as Puke and later as Droz in WWE, Drozdov’s wrestling career came to a sudden halt in October of 1999 when he suffered a severe neck injury during a match with D’Lo Brown. The injury left him paralyzed from the neck down. Desptie drastically changing his life, Drozdov was sure to make it clear that he held no ill-will toward Brown as the injury was a freak accident.

Tributes have already begun pouring in from across the world of wrestling, with Dwayne Johnson pointing to Droz’s love of football as well as wrestling. Drozdov played for the NFL prior to his career in WWE.

“Man I’m so sorry to hear one of our ring brothers has passed away. Darren Drozdov aka Droz. We wrestled on a lot of cards together. Such an awesome dude. Great personality and great wrestling talent. We always talked about football and fishing. Sending love, strength, mana and light to his family. RIP brother”

WWE ran an “In Memory of Darren Drozdov” graphic on SmackDown, and also issued the following statement on social media:

“WWE is saddened to learn that Darren Drozdov passed away on Friday, June 30, at age 54. WWE extends its condolences to Darren Drozdov’s family, friends and fans.”

Drozdov appeared as a contributor during the second season of Dark Side of the Ring, and the VICE show’s creators also took to social media to pay tribute.

‘We are truly saddened to hear of the passing of Darren Drozdov, who we were honored to work with during our second season. Despite enduring a tragic, life-altering injury, his passion for life, enthusiasm and strength will always be a source of inspiration to us. RIP Droz”

Brian Heffron, better known to wrestling fans as The Blue Meanie, shared images of himself and Drozdov together in memory of his longtime friend.

“Heartbroken to learn of the passing of Darren Drozdov aka Droz. Sweetheart of a man. Was fortunate to get know him in ECW and then WWE. All good memories! Shared lots of laughs. Rest In Peace Droz. My thoughts and heart go out to his family.”

More tributes from stars such as Natalya, Matt Hardy, and more can be read below.

Everyone at TJR Wrestling sends our deepest condolences to the family and friends of Darren Drozdov during this difficult time.