By Kenny King
Shad Gaspard was the first person I met waiting in line to register for “Tough Enough 2.” There were some impressive, massive athletes in that line, but there was something about this 6’7” dude with these long cornrows that made him stand out. He turned and looked at me and smiled that smile that made everybody feel like a friend and said, “Sup, kid. I’m Beast.”
Shad was a beast. A beast of a man, a beast of a friend, and a beast of a husband and father. He loved the wrestling business, and even though he could still go with the best of them in the ring, he was starting to embrace and love his role as a mentor to young talent.
It was as a father that Shad truly made his biggest impact on me. Watching his love for his son grow every day was a treat, and his #Lionandcub hashtags always had some fatherly insight for his followers. He fathered his son selflessly, and in the end made the ultimate sacrifice for him. I’m proud of how he lived, and I guess I’m even prouder of how he died. I will miss your long, drawn-out explanations to your more eccentric outlooks on life, my friend.
Rest easy, Beast.