As it’s often the case when one of the boys or girls passes away, their peers reflect on their former colleague on social media and judging by the thousands of posts, Vader was pretty much well liked by everyone.
Described as a gentle giant and one of the best big-men to ever step foot inside the squared circle, the former WCW and IWGP champion left a lot of friends behind who admired him and his work.
“WWE is saddened to learn that Leon White, better known to WWE audiences as Vader, passed away Monday night at the age of 63,” a statement from WWE read. Impact Wrestling was quick to follow saying, “We are deeply saddened to hear of the passing of Vader. Our thoughts are with his family today.”
One of Vader’s biggest rivals, Mick Foley, was one of the first to comment on Vader’s passing. “My heart is heavy with the news of Leon White’s passing. He was an amazing performer who brought out the very best in so many. Best big man ever, the most effective monster heel of his generation. My heartfelt prayers to his loved ones, and my gratitude for having known him.”
Jim Ross, who worked with Vader both in WCW and WWE said that Vader is without a doubt on the shortlist of the greatest super heavyweights. “He will be missed,” JR wrote.
WWE Hall of Famer Harley Race, who managed Vader in WCW, wrote, “It’s with sad condolences to hear that my long time friend @itsvadertime has passed away. He was a great person to manage and a great human being.”
Vader wrestled John “Bradshaw” Layfield in his last WWE pay-per-view match and JBL recounted what Vader told him that night. “He wanted me to kick out of his finish/he told me “today you get the old Vader, I want it to mean something when you win.” RIP big man, and thanks!”
Triple H also chimed in, writing, “Leon White entertained (and intimidated) audiences all over the world with his size, strength, and agility. Saddened to hear of his passing and our thoughts are with his family at this time.”