WWE announced in 2015 that eight-year-old Elijah Mainville, who went by his wrestling alter ego Drax Shadow, signed with the company as an honorary Superstar. Mainville got his own action figure and even appeared on an episode of RAW. He was diagnosed with neuroblastoma cancer, a condition he’d been receiving treatment for since 2010. After a long battle with cancer, he passed away in hospice on Sunday, January 8th, 2017.
WWE issued the following statement:
WWE extends its deepest condolences to the family of Elijah Mainville, aka “Drax Shadow,” who passed away on Jan. 8 at age 9. In August 2015 after submitting a Tough Enough audition video, Elijah joined Triple H, Stephanie McMahon and Stardust inside the ring to sign an honorary WWE Tough Enough contract before Monday Night Raw, taking the name “Drax Shadow.” Elijah was diagnosed with Stage 4 neuroblastoma in November 2010.
Several wrestlers have taken to Twitter to comment on Mainville’s passing:
Thank-you Elijah. You taught me bravery.
(I know there's a certain cowboy waiting for you in the sky…) pic.twitter.com/1u86qjSWNp
— Cody Rhodes (@CodyRhodes) January 9, 2017
Drax Shadow is the best.
If you can help Elijah's family during this incredibly difficult time, please do. Thanks.https://t.co/wu1dzH7UQv
— Kevin Owens (@FightOwensFight) January 8, 2017
— Stephanie McMahon (@StephMcMahon) January 9, 2017
— Sasha Bank$ (@SashaBanksWWE) January 9, 2017
We send our condolences to the Mainville family for their loss.