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Former WWE Tough Enough Competitor & Developmental Wrestler Passes Away At Age 38

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Former WWE Tough Enough competitor & WWE Developmental wrestler “The Spartan Swinger” Brian Danovich has passed away at the age of 38.

Brian was a part of the $1,000,000 fourth season of WWE Tough Enough, where he tore his pectoral muscle during the tryout, but still wanted to finish the tryout while being injured.

This impressed John Laurinaitis (who was the head of Talent Relations at that time) and he offered Brian a developmental contract.

Brian never made it to the WWE main roster as he was released from his developmental contract in 2005 after a series of injuries that he suffered.

Brian’s sister made the following post on Facebook regarding her brother’s passing:

“It’s with a heavy heart that I inform all of Brians friends and fans that the Spartan swinger has passed away at the young age of 38. Rest in peace my Dear Brother.”

A few days back on August 6, Brian made the following post on Facebook regarding her sister:

“I just wanted to say my big sis Trisha Danovich Craig is amazing. And was there 4 me 2 just listen.when I needed her the most . Sometimes that’s all we need. 1 day at a time.”

His sister Trisha then made the following comment under this post:

“Love you! You’re going make it. And I’ll be there every step of the way to help you through it.”

When Brian passed away, Trisha went back to this post to post an emotional comment. You can read it below:

“It breaks my heart that I couldn’t help you. I really tried. I thought the rehab would work this time. I thought that the changes and new things ahead were something that you would look forward to and help you through this rough time. I think it was just too much for you to take.

Change is hard. Sometimes it’s enough to make us give up. I’m sorry you felt that you had no other choices. I’m sorry that you felt giving up was your only option. And I’m sorry I wasn’t a better sister to help prevent this horrible tragedy. I hope you have now found the peace that you were always searching for in life. Rest in peace, my sweet and loving baby brother.”

Earlier this year in late-June, WWE Tough Enough III winner Matt Cappotelli passed away at the age of 38 after a tough battle with brain cancer.

Below is what his wife posted on Facebook:

“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.”

Below is the statement that WWE issued regarding Matt’s passing:

Matt Cappotelli passes away

“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,” Cappotelli 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.”

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