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   Thu, October 12, 2006

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ECW "original" released by WWE
By SLAM! Wrestling

WWE has released one of the holdovers from the first era of Extreme Championship Wrestling, as Francine Fournier and the company have parted ways.

The announcement came today on WWE's official website, in an article that stated that, "WWE has come to terms on the release of ECW Diva Francine Fournier as of today, Oct. 12. We wish Francine the best in all future endeavors."

Francine was one of only two ECW talents that was brought into the re-born brand earlier this year (Jazz being the other). She had made few appearances for ECW, primarily appearing in bikini contests and the like against Kelly Kelly on the house show circuit, while occasionally battling Ariel, or seconding Balls Mahoney, on the ECW on Sci-Fi program. She was also a part of the first One Night Stand pay-per-view.

Francine first burst onto the wrestling scene in 1995 in ECW as a fan, then manager, of Stevie Richards. Soon after, however the "Queen of Extreme" would be dumped by Richards (after convincing by then tag team partner Raven) and would go on to manage several combatants to championships, beginning with The Pitbulls. Her success as a manager would also lead the Triple Threat, Tommy Dreamer and Justin Credible to title belt runs.

Following the demise of ECW, Francine would spend a short amount of time in NWA-TNA before working in various womens promotions in the States.

Read SLAM!'s bio of Francine for more information on the Queen of Extreme.

-- with files from Jon Waldman