Owen Hart was born on May 7, 1965, in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. He was the youngest of 12 children. His parents were Stu and Helen Hart. He followed his family into wrestling and made his debut in 1986. On May 23, 1999, Owen died due to an accident at the Over the Edge PPV event held at the Kemper Arena in Kansas City, MO. He left behind a wife, Martha, and two children, Oje and Athena.
Early WWF Career:
Owen entered the WWE in 1988 and wrestled under a mask as the Blue Blazer. The fact that it was Owen that was wrestling under the mask was one of the worst kept secrets in wrestling. He left the WWE in 1989 and wrestled all over the globe.
The New Foundation and High Energy:
Owen returned to the WWE in 1991 and teamed with his brother-in-law Jim “The Anvil” Neidhart as the New Foundation. His brother Bret Hart was half of the legendary Hart Foundation tag team with Neidhart. In 1992, he was part of the tag team known as High Energy with Koko B Ware.
Feud with Bret:
In late 1993, tensions were simmering between Owen and his brother Bret. They teamed together at the 94 Royal Rumble and Owen attacked his brother after the match. This incident led to their incredible battle at WrestleMania X and several rematches for the WWE title including a memorable steel cage match at SummerSlam. At the 1994 Survivor Series, his interference cost Bret to lose the WWE Championship to Bob Backlund.
Yokozuna & The British Bulldog:
At WrestleMania XI, Owen formed a tag team with Yokozuna and in their first match they won the WWE tag team championship from the Smokin’ Gunns. In 1996, he won the tag team championship with his brother-in-law the British Bulldog. By early 1997, it appeared that the team would break up when the unthinkable happened.
The Hart Foundation:
Bret Hart, a longtime fan favorite turned against the American wrestling fans. He reformed the Hart Foundation with Owen, Neidhart, the British Bulldog, and Brian Pillman. In the U.S. they were hated but in Canada they were treated like heroes. Owen won the Intercontinental Championship from the Rock and lost it to Steve Austin at SummerSlam '97, the match where Steve Austin’s severe neck injury occurred.
Montreal & The Nation of Domination:
The Hart Foundation was disbanded after the infamous Montreal Screwjob at the Survivor Series 97. A few months later he joined the Nation of Domination which was led by the Rock and was feuding with D-Generation X. In late 1998, he formed a championship tag team with Jeff Jarrett and brought back The Blue Blazer gimmick.
The Worst Moment in Wrestling History:
On May 23, 1999, the Blue Blazer was scheduled to wrestle for the Intercontinental title against the Godfather. The Blazer was scheduled to enter the ring from the rafters, a stunt he had never done before. While the fans at home and in the arena were watching a taped interview of the Blazer, Owen plummeted from the rafters over 50 feet and hit a turnbuckle chest first. He was pronounced dead on arrival at the hospital.
A Controversial Decision:
The fans in the arena were not told about Owen’s death but the fans at home were. The PPV went on as if nothing happened. The next night, RAW was a tribute show for the late Owen Hart. Martha Hart settled a wrongful death lawsuit against the WWF for a reported $19 million and details about the harness were never revealed. In 2002, Martha wrote a book called Broken Harts about Owen’s life.
WWE Title Victory History:
4/28/97 – beat The Rock
10/5/97 Bad Blood – won tournament final over Faarooq
1/22/98 – beat Goldust
Tag Team Title
4/2/95 WrestleMania XI – w/Yokozuna beat The Smokin' Gunns
9/25/95 – w/Yokozuna rewarded titles due to a technicality from their previous title defense
9/22/96 Mind Games – w/The British Bulldog beat The Smokin’ Gunns
1/25/99 – w/Jeff Jarrett beat The Big Bossman & Ken Shamrock
King of the Ring
1994 King of the Ring - beat Razor Ramon in the tournament final
Sources include: PWI Almanac, WWE.com, Onlineworldofwrestling.com, and Slam Wrestling