Former World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) champ Sara Lee has died. She was 30.
“It is with heavy hearts we wanted to share that our Sara Weston has gone to be with Jesus,” Lee’s mother, Terri Lee, announced her daughter’s passing in a Thursday, October 6, Facebook statement. “We are all in shock and arrangements are not complete. We ask that you respectfully let our family mourn. We all need prayers especially Cory [Weston] and her children.”
After the Michigan native competed in track meets and powerlifting competitions in high school, she pursued a career in wrestling. Lee even won WWE’s 2015 “Tough Enough” contest, where the wrestling organization launched an elimination-style program to help find new talent. After winning “Tough Enough,” Lee was awarded a one-year contract.
“WWE is saddened to learn of the passing of Sara Lee,” the athletic organization tweeted on Thursday. “As a former ‘Tough Enough’ winner, Lee served as an inspiration to many in the sports-entertainment world. WWE offers its heartfelt condolences to her family, friends and fans.”
Lee is survived by husband Cory Weston (known professionally as wrestler Westin Blake), whom she wed in December 2017, and their three children: Piper, 5, Brady, 3, and a second son, 14 months. Weston, 35, has not yet publicly addressed the loss of his wife, but he has previously been candid about their special connection.
“Happy Birthday to my better, more beautiful half, and love of my life 🎂,” he gushed via Instagram in June. “We can’t thank you enough for everything that you do for our family. It takes a special person to handle on these hooligans (me included) 😉. Today, we celebrate a true angel on earth that has blessed my life more than you will ever know 😇❤️. I love you.”
While Lee’s cause of death has not been revealed, several of the couple’s former WWE costars have paid their respects.
“This is so heartbreaking — what a beautiful person we’ve lost — and leaving behind 3 small children and a husband who always expressed how madly in love he was with her,” Kayla Braxton tweeted at the time, sharing a link to a memorial GoFundMe page set up by fellow wrestler Bull James. “I’m so so sorry. Just heartbreaking.”
James, 34, for his part, noted that they were “all shocked and saddened” to learn of Lee’s sudden death. He added: “RIP Sara, you were one of the good ones.”
Scroll below to read more stars’ tributes to the late wrestler: