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   April 19, 2014



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Darren Young comes out as gay
By WENN.com and SLAM! Wrestling


The Prime Time Players, Titus O'Neill and Darren Young, at WrestleMania Fan Axxess in April 2013. Photo by Mike Mastrandrea

Superstar wrestler Darren Young has confirmed he is gay.

The World Wrestling Entertainment professional, real name Fredrick Rosser, 'came out' during an interview with TMZ.com on Wednesday, making him the first openly gay wrestler.

The 29 year old made the announcement after he was asked by the website's videographer if there is a place for gay stars in the sport.

"Absolutely, look at me," Young replied. "I'm a WWE superstar and to be honest with you, I'll tell you right now, I'm gay, and I'm happy, very happy.

"I'm happy with myself -- some people might not like it, some people will like it. I'm here to please myself, I'm here to be happy and it's very important that I'm happy with myself."


The WWE released this statement on Thursday morning: "WWE is proud of Darren Young for being open about his sexuality, and we will continue to support him as a WWE Superstar. Today, in fact, Darren will be participating in one of our Be A Star anti-bullying rallies in Los Angeles to teach children how to create positive environments for everyone regardless of age, race, religion or sexual orientation."

On Twitter, Stephanie McMahon (@StephMcMahon), the head writer for WWE and daughter of WWE owner Vince McMahon, wrote: "Congratulations to @DarrenYoungWWE for being the first openly gay WWE Superstar!"

Young has been with the WWE since 2009. Before that, he worked on the independent wrestling scene as Fred Sampson.

He was on the first season of NXT, with CM Punk as his mentor.

There have been other gay professional wrestlers before, like Chris Kanyon, Pat Patterson, Orlando Jordan and Sandy Parker, but none were featured performers in WWE on TV when they came out.

"I don't mean to sound aloof about it, but to me, it's not such a big deal," said former WWE referee Jim Korderas, who hosts the Aftermath show on Sportsnet 360. "It's cool that he came out, but at the end of the day, I don't view him as a gay wrestler. He's a WWE superstar who just happens to be gay."



RELATED LINKS

  • August 15, 2013: Mat Matters: Darren Young's statement took courage
  • Twitter: @DarrenYoungWWE