Monday Night Raw started on an emotional note as WWE superstar Roman Reigns shared that he is battling leukaemia.
Leukaemia is a type of blood cancer which develops in the bone marrow.
Roman Reigns, whose real name is Joe Anoa’i, has relinquished his WWE Universal Championship and will be undergoing treatment for an indefinite period.
— WWE (@WWE) October 23, 2018
“My real name is Joe and I have been living with leukaemia for 11 years,” he said. “And unfortunately it’s back.”
“And because that leukaemia is back and I can’t fulfill my role..I can’t be that fighting champion and I have to relinquish the universal championship.”
EXCLUSIVE: Moments after announcing that his returning leukemia has forced him to relinquish the Universal Championship, @WWERomanReigns is met with an outpouring of support backstage. #Raw pic.twitter.com/JRv0iYLILJ
— WWE (@WWE) October 23, 2018
Reigns went on to say that he will be back and the WWE Universe will see him soon.
His fellow superstars have prayed for his speedy recovery.
— The Usos (@WWEUsos) October 23, 2018
I’m just learning now of @WWERomanReigns leukemia diagnosis. Stunned. I liked and respected him from the moment I met him. Sending my very best wishes and prayers for you, Joe.
— Mick Foley (@RealMickFoley) October 23, 2018
.@WWERomanReigns YOU gave us the gift of your work ethic in NXT. You gave us the gift of your athleticism & determination in the ring. You gave us the gift of your knowledge in the locker room. But your comeback match will be the greatest gift of all. We are all looking fwd to it
— Charlotte Flair (@MsCharlotteWWE) October 23, 2018
I haven’t been able to stop thinking @WWERomanReigns and how strong and brave he was tonight on #Raw. Roman put EVERYTHING into perspective tonight and what a hero he is. THANKYOU Roman for being a leader and a fighter. We’ll see you back soon my friend. 🙏 pic.twitter.com/LK0sstAHBj
— Nattie (@NatbyNature) October 23, 2018
.@WWERomanReigns you are the definition of what it means to be a leader and a champion and one of the toughest lads on the planet. We are all behind you and sending love. You will beat this. #ThankYouRoman
— Rebecca Quin (@BeckyLynchWWE) October 23, 2018
I’ve never seen the air sucked out of a locker room like it was tonight. Our thoughts and prayers are with Roman and his family. #ThankYouRoman
— Daniel Bryan (@WWEDanielBryan) October 23, 2018
His real name is Joe & he’s a stand up guy! Inside the ring one of the best I’ve battled with. Outside the ring one of the most genuine people I have ever met & learned from. See you soon good brother #ThankYouRoman ( ..and he smells great)
— Finn Bálor forEVERYone (@FinnBalor) October 23, 2018
‘Courage – strength in the face of pain or grief.’ You have given us your everything including a courageously vulnerable moment. We, your WWE family, give you all of our love and support. #ThankYouRoman #NeverGiveUp
— John Cena (@JohnCena) October 23, 2018
— PAIGE (@RealPaigeWWE) October 23, 2018
— Shinsuke Nakamura (@ShinsukeN) October 23, 2018
Reigns is one of the most famous wrestlers inside the squared circle. The Shield member has held the titled of WWE World Heavyweight Championship thrice, and the Universal Championship once.
He was the 2015 Royal Rumble winner and won the 2014 Slammy Award for Superstar of the Year.