Roman Reigns appeared on Monday Night Raw this week to announce he is fighting leukemia and would be leaving to seek treatment. Just after it aired on the USA Network, WWE sent out the following statement, making clear why he went public with his fight against the disease:
“STAMFORD, Conn., October 22, 2018 – Tonight on Monday Night Raw, Roman Reigns (aka Joe Anoa’i) announced that he is relinquishing the WWE Universal Championship and taking a leave of absence from WWE as he once again fights leukemia, which had been in remission since late 2008. Reigns is taking his battle with leukemia public in an effort to raise awareness and funds for research in order to advance cures for the disease.”
Roman Reigns opened this week’s episode of Monday Night Raw wearing casual clothing, the Universal championship over his shoulder. With reports going around that he was injured, it seemed he may be coming out to confirm as much.
Instead, he dropped a bombshell, announcing that for the past 11 years he’s been living with leukemia and it’s back. Because of that, he is relinquishing the Universal championship, going home, and focusing on his health.
“I will beat this, I will be back, and you will see me very, very soon,” he said.
He said this is not a retirement but after he’s done “whooping leukemia’s ass once again, I’m coming back home.”
After a rousing speech, he made his way up the entrance ramp, where he was greeted by Seth Rollins and Dean Ambrose. They all embraced, and each of them cried as they hugged each other disappearing backstage.
You Know We Love You Roman. #UrStillChamp.