ames Brian Hellwig, better known as "The Ultimate Warrior"
collapsed yesterday evening while walking towards his car with his wife
in Scottsdale, Ariz. He was pronounced dead at an area hospital shortly
Warrior (he legally changed his name to the mononym in 1993) was a 2-time World Wrestling Federation Intercontinental Champion. After
pinning Hulk Hogan in WrestleMania VI's main event, he became the only
wrestler in history to hold both the WWF's Intercontinental and
Enigmatic indeed, Warrior was an avid writer, blogger and public
speaker who didn't mince words when expressing his point of view on
topics like politics, sexuality and beyond. "Queering doesn't make the
world work," he once famously stated.
In Santa Fe, he found a natural setting to nurture his artistic side.
“In 2001, after years of vacationing there, my family and I moved to Santa Fe, New Mexico,” he stated on
. “The historical Canyon Road area is lined up and down with galleries housed in small, old, historical adobe buildings; each exuding an incredible, palpable creative energy. It's one of the things I've always loved most about Santa Fe.”
He then shared how his love for art was cemented after taking a
3-hour class at Artisan. Warrior, a Georgia O'Keeffe fan, recalled instant enthusiasm by his
instructor, who used his piece as an example for other students.
"The unexpected encouragement was something in itself," he wrote. "Here, a professional art instructor, charging $300 per attendee, an accomplished artist in her own right, getting excited about what I'd done. It was a landmark moment in my art career."
Samples of his artwork can be seen here.
Just three days before his passing, Warrior was inducted into the
WWE Hall of Fame. The following day, he appeared in WrestleMania XXX
and just one day before his death, Warrior made his first Raw appearance in 18 years.
"As I thought about what I was gonna say this evening, it's been
hard for me to find the words," Warrior told the packed house,
noticeably out of breath.
Out of character and dressed in a three-piece suit, he then
pulled out a mask reminiscent of this iconic 1980's make-up, let his
alter ego take center stage and drove the crowd wild.
Santa Fe Reporter