Chair Shots: No More "Sunny" Days
Oct 10, 2012 - 1:37:03 PM
She used to be beautiful.
She used to be popular.
She used to be on top of the world.
Tammy Sytch had everything that a young, beautiful, questionably talented woman could ask for. She was every male wrestling fan’s wet dream, and maybe even a few female fans. When the WWE introduced the world to “Sunny”, the whole of what defined a female’s role in professional wrestling changed. Never before had a valet been more popular than the wrestlers she accompanied. From 1994-1995, Sunny was the most downloaded woman on the internet, and not once did she have to take off her clothes to do it.
So why wasn’t it enough? How did the woman whose image plastered walls and computers everywhere become the same person who has been arrested 5 times in the last 4 weeks for everything from violating a restraining order, to burglary, to attempted strangulation? We’ve seen stars of the squared circle fall from grace before, and it’s often a sad thing to witness, but some fall harder than others. Tammy Sytch continues to fall, and unfortunately unless she reaches out for help the fall will not stop.
Stories of Tammy’s problems with drugs go back as far as her first stint as Sunny in the WWE. When she first left in 1998, it was amidst rumours of drug problems and backstage problems. Her relationship with Chris Candido was seen by many as the only thing holding her together. When they both left for ECW, the stories of addiction got worse, as both Tammy and Chris took time off to deal with her issues. Everybody knew what was happening, but no one reached out to help.
Why is it easier to turn a blind eye, than to do the right thing?
Everywhere that Tammy and Chris went, problems followed. A short stint in WCW came to an end clouded by issues of drug abuse. For several years after that, Tammy and Chris bounced around the independent circuit, once again trying to capture lightning in a bottle; hoping they could get back to the glory days of the WWE. However tragedy continued to follow her, as Chris Candido died from a blood clot in 2005, complications from an earlier surgery. The bottom had fallen out.
Tammy meandered through a few more shows, but her heart was no longer in it. From all appearances, she had cleaned herself up, but wrestling wasn’t the same without her other half. The money was gone, the fame was gone, “Sunny” was gone. The beautiful woman that so many men dreamt of seeing nude was replaced by a shell of her former self, finally stripping away any dignity she had left, posing for Missy Hyatt’s Wrestling Vixxxens, adult website. But by this time, no one really cared. And those that did, they were saddened by what their dream girl had turned into.
“Sunny” was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame in 2011. It was a moment met with cheers and support. Many in attendance had remarked at how well she looked, and hoping without hope that she had finally turned the corner; finally exorcised the demons that had for so long haunted her. She had rebounded from the loss of Chris Candido. She had rebounded from numerous battles with drugs and alcohol. There were discussions of possibly bringing her back into the WWE fold for another run as America’s Sweetheart.
But none of that happened.
One can only wonder what the WWE knew that at the time the fans weren’t privy to. Tammy’s relationship with independent star Damien Darling, turned out to be everything that her relationship with Chris Candido wasn’t- toxic, violent, and damaging. Tammy Sytch’s arrest record is like a laundry list of bad choices. The WWE has sponsored three different stints of rehab, and shortly after her third arrest they released this statement:
"As part of WWE’s Former Talent Program, we sent Ms. Sytch to rehabilitation three times, with all costs covered by WWE."
"Unfortunately, Ms. Sytch continues to make poor personal choices. WWE will continue to provide assistance should she want to take advantage of it."
The WWE’s treatment of drug abuse and their Wellness Program has been debated ad nauseam by wrestling fans since its inception, but you cannot argue that should treatment be needed, the WWE has always been there to take care of their employees, present and former, and pay for their rehabilitation time and time again. Stephanie McMahon herself has discussed the numerous times they have paid for Scott Hall to go to rehab, and from the looks of it, Tammy Sytch isn’t that far behind him.
But how do you let yourself go to the point where you get arrested 5 times in the course of 4 weeks. The timeline of her arrests is almost unbelievable to read.
Arrest #1 (Sept.11- 8:55PM)- Disorderly Conduct
Arrest #2 (Sept. 12- 4:49PM)- Disorderly Conduct, Strangulation, Violation of Restraining Order
Arrest #3 (Sept. 13- 8:00 PM)- Violation of Restaining Order
Arrest #4 (Oct. 8)- Violation of Restraining Order
Arrest # 5 (Oct. 9)- 3rd Degree Burglary and 3 counts of Violating of Restraining Order
Tammy’s problems have gone beyond drugs and alcohol at this point. Former ECW star Axl Rotten has come out on Facebook pleading for someone to help one of his best friends. But I have to ask, if Tammy is truly one of his best friends, why isn’t he doing anything to help her himself? Why isn't he on her doorstep with his motor running to take her to rehab? Why once again, is a blind eye being turned? Tammy Sytch is troubled, and if something isn’t done to help her, we may once again be writing columns about another former wrestling star that has gone too soon, gone too young. I don’t know about you, but it’s not a
column I want to write.
“My definition of a Diva is that all-around, well-rounded performer," Sunny said, in an interview with WWE.com. “The girls who came before me were so one dimensional and then I came along and anything they threw at me I could do. I could get in the ring and have a match, I managed at ringside, I co-hosted TV shows, I did broadcasting, I did the modeling. I was the first one."
Until next time,
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