May 23, 1999 is a date that will live in infamy in the annals of professional wrestling. It was on that date, at WWE’s Over the Limit pay-per-view in the Kemper Arena, that Owen Hart suffered his tragic accident. I’m sure most of you remember exactly where you were during the show, whether you were watching the event live or hearing the news second-hand. It was one of the most shocking, heartbreaking, and surreal moments I’ve ever witnessed in my time as a wrestling fan.
Owen was scheduled to compete in his Blue Blazer gimmick against The Godfather in an Intercontinental Title match. As the Blazer, he was to stage a grand entrance in which he’d be lowered into the ring from the rafters in a superhero-like fashion. In a deadly turn of events, there was a horrible malfunction with the apparatus that was to be Owen’s means of descent. He was released prematurely from his harness and plummeted over 70 feet into the ring. An hour later, Jim Ross announced to the world that Owen had died at age 34 as a result of the fall. The rest of the event continued as planned, but it was difficult to care about much else after the delivery of such harrowing news.