Endorsed by the Benoit Estate
Before his untimely death, Chris Benoit and journalist friend Scott Zerr began work writing Chris` life story. Their close friendship allowed Zerr unlimited access into Benoit's personal life beyond the ring and the two spent much time together outlining the vision Chris had for his book. Though the material was never completed in its entirety, Chris maintained a daily diary and Zerr brings those words and emotions together with the story the two friends started, to tell Benoit's powerful story in a candid and personal account. Told in Chris` own voice The Chris Benoit Story reveals the personal and private world of one of wrestling's biggest superstars.
When pro wrestler Chris Benoit asphyxiated his son and wife, leaving copies of the Bible next to each of their bodies before he hanged himself in a basement weight room, the world got a peek into yet another tragedy brought on by the use of performance enhancing drugs by those who are revered and admired as athletes. Steroids were found in the home, leading media organizations to hypothesize that a steroid-induced rage may have been the likely cause of Benoit's actions.
Benoit's drive for success cost him the ultimate price. In a world based greatly on appearances, Benoit focused on maximizing his size and ensured that he always be in peak physical condition. Benoit, like others in the sport, tested the boundaries of human abilities, propelling their bodies from extreme heights, or like weapons at each opponent. The extreme physical abuse, including being smashed over the head with chairs, or driven heavily into the mat head first, gave Benoit numerous concussions and ultimately caused devastating and irreversible brain damage. Autopsy tests conducted on his brain tissue revealed that he had suffered from acute chronic traumatic encephalopathy, and had brain damage in all four lobes of the brain and brain stem. Medical expert reports concluded his brain resembled that of an 85-year-old Alzheimer's patient and neurologists from the examining hospital determined that Benoit could not be held accountable for his actions as a result.
The Benoit tragedy occurred in Fayetteville, Georgia, in June 2007, a long way from Benoit's early adolescence in Edmonton where he decided to join the wrestling profession. Benoit's father, though not a wrestling fan, nonetheless encouraged his son by buying him a set of weights for strength training and, later, by allowing him to drive to Calgary, some three hours away, to train in the legendary Hart family "Dungeon." Benoit began his career in Stu Hart's Stampede Wrestling promotion, and he ultimately ascended to the top of his profession, wrestling for Extreme Championship Wrestling (ECW), World Championship Wrestling (WCW), and World Wrestling Federation/Entertainment (WWF), becoming one of the most popular and respected competitors in professional wrestling in the process.
A true mystery by any account, The Chris Benoit Story offers Benoit a final farewell and opportunity to tell his story to his hundreds of thousands of fans. It is a powerful story with the most tragic of endings. Benoit is not the villain, but rather the victim and sadly he was not the only victim. Zerr introduces the book and investigates the circumstances that precipitated in the murder suicide, and explores the dark side of a sport that pervades the North American airwaves. Zerr further explores the effect his friend's death had on his family from a first-hand perspective.