Earlier this week, professional wrestling legend Vader underwent open heart surgery in a bid to save his life. Following the surgery, his son tweeted an update that was less than comforting, but now Vader himself has spoken out about his road to recovery.
5 days since my surgery & it has been some the worst pain I have ever endured. The Hospital staff has been excellent and my surgeon was fantastic. I am greatful for the life I've had & the opportunitny to continue to live. THANK YOU JESUS. https://t.co/vA6VyYDrHZ
— Big Van Vader (@itsvadertime) March 31, 2018
The tweet is an encouraging sign that Leon White is going to be okay after several previous unsuccessful attempts to halt the advance of heart failure, which when diagnosed, gave him only two years to live. The disease was attributed to his immense weight – Vader weighed 450 pounds at the peak of his career – and the rigors of living life as a professional football player and wrestler.
The first American to hold the IWGP World Heavyweight Championship was a marvel when he stormed onto the scene, his height and weight made him a heel to be feared. Feuds and bouts against the likes of Sting, Cactus Jack, and Ric Flair in WCW made him a sensation. Mismanagement and backstage politics upon a move to the then WWF saw him relegated to the mid-card with the exception of a summer 1996 headline role against Shawn Michaels.
We wish Vader nothing but luck in his recovery and I for one hope to see him take his rightful place in the WWE Hall of Fame in 2019.
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