Former Ring of Honor wrestler Xavier passed away at the age of 43. Xavier began his ROH career in 2002 and retired from pro wrestling in 2011.
Xavier defeated Low Ki on Sept. 21, 2002, to become the second ROH World Champion. He held the title for 182 days before losing it to Samoa Joe on March 22, 2003.
Ring of Honor issued a statement following his death. The company’s statement reads: “Ring of Honor is saddened to learn of the passing of former ROH World Champion Xavier (John Bedoya). He was 43.”
Xavier made his Ring of Honor debut on the company’s first show, The Era of Honor Begins, on February 23, 2002. Xavier defeated Scoot Andrews in the match. He last wrestled in ROH in 2007 and officially retired from pro wrestling in 2011. Xavier also competed in several mixed martial arts fights from 2009.
PWInsider reported that Xavier, real name John Bodeya, had passed away but details surrounding it were still not known. The site said that members of his family confirmed the news with friends.
Xavier was set to make a comeback (from retirement) and face Jay Lethal at ‘ROH Past vs. Present’ show in March in Las Vegas. The show was cancelled due to the pandemic.
Several wrestlers took to Twitter expressing their grief on Xavier’s death including Ian Riccaboni, Christopher Daniels, Zelina Vega, Isaiah Kassidy, and many more:
Man, gone way too soon.
Always so nice when he’d swing by NYC for ROH events. Unheralded and under aporeciated. Was looking forward to calling his comeback match in ROH.
Rest in Peace, Xavier. https://t.co/UH96AJh2zK
— Ian Riccaboni (@IanRiccaboni) August 16, 2020
RIP Xavier. So ahead of his time and talented. Way too young.
— Pat Buck (@buckneverstops) August 17, 2020
Rest In Peace Xavier. Thank you for the matches, both as opponent and partner. You will be missed.
— Christopher Daniels (@facdaniels) August 17, 2020
Godspeed, Xavier. Too young, too soon. Rest well, sir.
— Adam Pearce (@ScrapDaddyAP) August 17, 2020
Just learned my buddy Xavier has passed.Can’t believe it.Such a good friend I came up with on indys when I started wrestling in ‘01. Sad & shocked about this. Don’t know what happened,but prayers & condolences to his son he loved so much & his family. RIP my friend.😰#LikeWhoa pic.twitter.com/gifulJtkpw
— ✨Velvet Sky✨ (@VelVelHoller) August 17, 2020
RIP Xavier 🙏 Prayers for his Family
— Cortez Castro (@RickyReyes01) August 17, 2020
So sad to hear about Xavier’s passing. Can’t believe it. He was so young, talented & such a nice person. He will be missed. Condolences to his family & friends. I knew him since I first started wrestling. I hate that I can’t that one pic of us, just 2 babies happy to wrestle. RIP
— 𝓩𝖊𝖑𝖎𝖓𝖆 𝓥𝖊𝖌𝖆 (@Zelina_VegaWWE) August 17, 2020
Very sad to hear of the passing of John Xavier. He was the 2nd ever @ringofhonor World Champion and was scheduled to come back to ROH at Past Vs Present in March before the event was canceled. My condolences to his friends and family. May he Rest In Peace.
— Rhett Titus (@RhettTitusANX) August 17, 2020
— Private Party (@IsiahKassidy) August 17, 2020
Ugh. Very saddened to hear of the passing of John “Xavier” Kirius. He was always a very cool person and a great athlete. I had several memorable matches with him. Especially in the mid 2000’s for Jersey All Pro Wrestling. Heartbreaking. Godspeed my friend.
— Frankie Kazarian (@FrankieKazarian) August 17, 2020
Fans too took to Twitter to share their sadness.
Thank you for teaching me how to push through the pain and keep going when things got hard. Thank you for believing in me early on. Every Saturday you would break us down just to build us up & I will always carry those lessons with me. We will miss you 🙏🏻❤️ pic.twitter.com/RLWLILZeoN
— Charles Mason (@Charles___Mason) August 17, 2020
Saddened to hear that John Xavier passed away. Always so kind and gracious. Fun person to be around and truly one of the good guys. God bless John. RiP.
— Abyss (@TherealAbyss) August 17, 2020
Just heard about #Xavier passing away. I’m in total shock. I can’t seem to find out what happened. What an incredible talent and person. He was always so kind to me and was amazing to work with. RIP John
— Cherry 🍒 (@FmrDivaCherry) August 17, 2020
— Alex Kalil (@AlexKalil) August 17, 2020
RIP Xavier. The second ever ROH World Champion and one of the most underrated independent wrestlers of all time. pic.twitter.com/O6rXQYoMso
— 🐯TIGER DRIVER🐯 (@TigerDriver9X) August 16, 2020
May Xavier’s soul rest in peace