Bret Hart Talks About His Brother Owen & Jerry Lawler’s Heart Attack

WWE Hall of Famer Bret Hart recently spoke to The Altoona Mirror to promote appearance at tonight’s Big Time Wrestling live event in Altoona,  PA. Here are some highlights of what Bret said about:

Wrestling’s Audience Changing In The Late 90’s:

“Wrestling was everything for everyone,” Hart said. “Then it turned to concentrating on certain audiences in the late 90s when the wrestling fans were cheering bad guys, and it wasn’t any fun anymore.

“Grandpa and grandma weren’t going anymore. It wasn’t a family atmosphere. It was guys with beer guts and rednecks; they weren’t good fans. They were just there to get drunk. Not all fans were like that, but it got too rowdy for young kids. Now it’s more acceptable.”

His Brother Owen’s Tragic Death In 1999:

“After dealing with what happened with my brother Owen over the years, I’ve come to see it was a horrible accident, and I don’t think Vince McMahon would want something like that to happen. It wouldn’t be advantageous to anyone.”

“We were hurt by that, though. I don’t think my dad ever got over what happened with Owen. It had a rebound effect with my dad and Davey. I think my dad and Davey would have lived a lot longer if not for Owen dying.”

Jerry Lawler’s Recent Heart Attack:

“It was quite stricken in the locker room, and it was a horrible feeling. It reminded people of what happened with Owen. It was stressful for everyone from Vince McMahon to you name it. Jerry was fighting for his life. His heart stopped for 20 minutes, but those paramedics kept pushing on his chest and really worked hard to save him. Everyone carried on. The WWE should have been applauded for finally doing things the right way.”

Brad Davis

Brad Davis is the editor of and He's been hooked on pro wrestling since 1989 and has attended 8 WrestleManias

  • Lalalalalelelele

    I can’t believe it hasn’t even been 20 years that Owen passed. It feels like he’s been gone for a long time. I wish it never happened. Him and Eddie I miss the most.

    • Seth Bob


    • JamieEvsxx

      to be fair 13 years is a pretty long time…RIP Owen…=( xxx

  • Andrew Campbell

    I don’t agree with Bret’s assessment of the late ’90s at all. “It wasn’t any fun anymore”?? “They weren’t good fans”?? The late 90s to early 2000s was entertainment/wrestling at its best and was a fun time to be a wrestling fan.

    They weren’t “good wrestling fans” just because they cheered the bad guys?? Give me a break.

    Bret just comes off sounding bitter all the time just because he didn’t like the direction wrestling took after his pre-1997 era that he loves to rave about ended. He may not have enjoyed the Attitude Era or found it fun to watch, but there are millions…and millions of fans who feel differently.

    During the Attitude Era, WWE appealed to a wide audience across all demographics. The fans actually cared about the stars, and were passionate about the product. They weren’t just guys with “beer guts” as Bret claims. Today’s “family” audience that Bret seems to love so much is boring, lifeless, and most of the time just seems uninterested in what’s happening in the ring.

    • Seth Bob

      Agreed. So agreed.

    • Mick Cologne

      Ever think he was talking about WCW there chief? You know the company he was in at the end of the 90’s and the company that entrusted Vince Russo to give the belt to David Arquette which Russo still thinks is a great idea.

      Maybe he is bitter or full of his own shit, but the thing I miss most about him as a performer is that he took his shit seriously. Probably too seriously, but it’s better than what we get nowadays from a lot of wrestlers/creative team.

      • DAX

        Stop using that foul R word man. Little kids are visiting this site.

    • pwnez

      He sorta sounds like Bruno Sammartino but a little less bitter.

    • Attitude

      You’re a smart dude.

  • Hobo With A Shot Gun

    I miss Owen

  • 7 year old boy

    I love Bret but he is seriously getting annoying being bitter about the past. Move the fudge on.

  • ItsProgressNow

    Bret is an idiot, the 20 minutes thing again

  • morrisonfanone

    At least he doesn’t blame Vince for Owen’s death.