Matt Cappotelli, who was one of the winners for season 3 of Tough Enough, has passed away at 38 years old. He had been suffering from another bout of brain cancer.
His wife, Lindsay Cappotelli posted the following on Facebook.
“Hey Team Capp…I’ve been struggling with what to say and how to say this, and I’ll probably end up rambling, but here goes. Today my love-my strong, sweet, beautiful love-took his last breath at 3:30 a.m. and went Home to be with Jesus…exactly one year after his brain surgery. You think you can be prepared for this when you know it’s coming, but you just can’t. The only person who’s comfort I want right now is the one who can’t give it to me. I miss him so much. I know where he is now is so much better, but it doesn’t change how much I miss him.”
After wining Tough Enough, Cappotelli went to Ohio Valley Wrestling, where the won the heavyweight championship. Right before he was to be called to the main roster, Cappotelli learned of the tumor in 2006 and in 2007 an operation removed 90% of it.
10 years later, a larger and more aggressive form of the tumor returned. Doctors were not able to remove all of it and Cappotelli was then given the bad news.
Form everyone at WrestleNewz, we would like to send our condolences to the friends and family of Matt Cappotelli.
Below is a statement from WWE and several wrestling figures reacting to the unfortunate news.
WWE is saddened to learn that Matt Cappotelli, a promising Superstar who was a co-winner of WWE Tough Enough III, passed away Friday at age 38.
His death was first announced by his wife, Lindsay Cappotelli, on her Facebook page.
“Today my love-my strong, sweet, beautiful love-took his last breath at 3:30 a.m. and went Home to be with Jesus exactly one year after his brain surgery,” she wrote in her post.
Matt Cappotelli, who previously proved his athletic prowess as a member of the Western Michigan University football team, quickly made a name for himself in sports-entertainment as a co-winner of WWE Tough Enough III.
He shared the victory in 2003 with John Hennigan, who later came to be known as John Morrison. After coming out on top of the WWE reality competition, the duo quickly started their training in Ohio Valley Wrestling to become future Superstars.
Cappotelli’s OVW training was cut short in 2006 due to an initial brain cancer diagnosis that was treated one year later. Ten years after surviving the first battle, his cancer resurfaced in 2017 and worsened later in the year.
In 2017, Cappotelli spoke with WWE.com about his second bout with cancer. Despite the troubling outlook, he continued to publicly fight his illness in hopes his story might help others find the strength to keep fighting their battles, too.
“Life is the most precious gift we’re given,” Capotelli said in 2017. “If I can inspire others to not give up on the life they’ve been blessed to have, that’s what I’m trying to spread – hope.”
WWE extends its condolences to Matt Cappotelli’s family, friends and fans.
My first best friend in the wrestling business and to this day one of the best people I’ve ever known Matt Cappotelli has passed on. I’m gutted about this news. Matt inspired everyone around him especially me early in my career. He is loved and will be missed.
— John Morrison (@TheRealMorrison) June 29, 2018
#RIPMattCappotelli You showed everyone what it means to never give up and to always stay positive. It was a honor to know you. https://t.co/rHsOgXIsfm
— Stephanie McMahon (@StephMcMahon) June 30, 2018
Saddened to hear of the passing of Matt Cappotelli. He’s was a great guy who deserved so much more. R.I.P. Brother https://t.co/42mq7ZfoGO
— Shelton J. Benjamin (@Sheltyb803) June 29, 2018
Very saddened to hear that Matt Cappotelli passed away. I had the privilege of working with and getting to know Matt during my time in OVW. If everyone strived to be even half the human being Matt was the world would be a wonderful wonderful place. #RIP
— Lance Storm (@LanceStorm) June 29, 2018
Blessed to know Matt Cappotelli
since his wrestling journey began
He was more Hardcore & Tougher Enough than any person I’ve ever known
Glad to have reconnected w/him
He never stopped fighting or questioned his faith
Great human being pic.twitter.com/zspqy1AJPz
— Tommy Dreamer (@THETOMMYDREAMER) June 29, 2018
?In 2005, Matt Cappotelli & I were gonna be brought up to WWE Smackdown as the tag team “Reality Check.” One day out of no where he called me and said that he had just been diagnosed w/ brain cancer. On the phone, even with this scary news he remained positive and was gonna fight to beat cancer. He has been fighting for his life ever since. Every time I saw him he was positive and always had a smile on his face. Today, we lost a good one. A true fighter. My condolences to his wife and family. Matt, you will be missed my friend. #RIPMatt #TeamCapp?
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