In absolutely terrible news, former WWE star Shad Gaspard, one half of the tag team Cryme Tyme with partner JTG, has gone missing after he, his 10-year-old son, and several other swimmers were reportedly caught in a riptide while swimming in the ocean at Venice Beach, California on Sunday. TMZ reports the news, which thankfully says that Gaspard's son was rescued by lifeguards who rushed the waters to pull people out. Gaspard, however, was not rescued. As if the report wasn't already heartbreaking enough, TMZ reports that Gaspard told lifeguards to help his son first and was last seen when a wave crashed over him. A search is in progress using divers and helicopters, but it doesn't look good. Gaspard is 39 years old.
Making his wrestling debut in WWE developmental territory OVW in 2003, Gaspard debuted in WWE in 2006 as part of Cryme Tyme. The team wrestled for WWE until 2010 and continued in the independent scene afterwards. Gaspard went on to have a career in film, television, and video games as an actor, stuntman, and screenwriter. Gaspard's film script about a wrestling promotion, Pinfall, was featured by The Black List in December of 2018.
In 2016, Gaspard and JTG were traveling together in Florida when they happened upon a gas station robbery. Gaspard intervened and foiled the robbery, taking a gun out of the robber's hand, smashing his head into the door Al Bundy style, and putting the robber in a rear naked choke until police arrived. It turned out later that the robber was using a bb-gun, though that doesn't erase Gaspard's heroism since no one knew that in the heat of the moment. Aside from the good-natured irony of a man in a tag team called Cryme Tyme actually stopping crime, Shad Gaspard appears by any definition of the word to be an amazing human being. Our thoughts are with his family and friends during this difficult time.