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  • Umaga | Polydrug-Induced Heart Attack

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    Umaga | Polydrug-Induced Heart Attack

    Umaga was the ring name of Eddie Fatu, a professional wrestler known for his participation in World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) as well as the All Japan Pro Wrestling (AJPW). Sadly, Umaga passed away from a heart attack brought on by polydrug use.

    How Umaga Died

    Umaga’s death occurred on December 4, 2009. At the age of 36, he was found unresponsive by his wife in his Houston, Texas home. 

    According to toxicology reports, at the time of his death, Umaga had various painkillers and other medication in his system including hydrocodone, diazepam, and a muscle relaxant.

    Umaga was brought to the hospital, where it was announced he had suffered two heart attacks, requiring life support.

    Because of this, the cause of death was ruled as a heart attack caused by acute toxicity from polydrug use. With his tragic passing, Umaga unfortunately joined several professional wrestlers who also passed away in their thirties, including Test, Eddie Guerrero, and Davey Boy Smith.

    About Umaga

    Born Edward Fatu on March 28, 1973, he later procured the ring name Umaga for the WWE. He was born in American Samoa and was a member of the well-known Samoan wrestling family Anoa’i.

    In addition to this, Umaga was the cousin of other professional wrestlers such as The Rock, Roman Reigns, and Yokozuna. Additionally, Umaga was the uncle of the wrestlers Solo Sikoa and the Usos.

    Before he became a WWE superstar, Umaga began his career in 1995 at his uncle’s World Xtreme Wrestling (WXW) promotion. Later, he entered the World Wrestling Federation (WWF), joining the tag team The Island Boyz.

    Ring Names

    Throughout his career, Fatu used various ring names including:

    • Armageddon 1
    • Ekmo
    • Jamal
    • Ekmo Fatu
    • Uso Fatu
    • Umaga

    In 2002 Fatu joined a tag team known as 3-Minute Warning. Their debut took place on an episode of the television show “Raw.”

    Unfortunately, Umaga was ousted as a WWE wrestler due to various troubles including a bar fight in 2003. Wrestler Umaga continued to participate in the sport, debuting in the Total Nonstop Action Wrestling (TNA) as well as the AJPW.


    After achieving success as part of the AJPW, including receiving the World’s Strongest Tag Determination League tournament as well as the World Tag Team Championship, he was later defeated and re-signed his contract with WWE.

    In 2006, Umaga defeated Ric Flair and later went on a winning streak during the Survivor Series, competing and winning against countless WWE stars including Triple H and John Cena. Despite multiple wins, Umaga went on to lose against Bobby Lashley and also lost the Royal Rumble to Cena.

    With the nickname “The Samoan Bulldozer,” Umaga continued his career with the WWE, eventually becoming the representative of Vince McMahon during Donald Trump’s “Battle of the Billionaires” at Wrestlemania23. 

    At Wrestlemania 23, Umaga competed against Jeff Hardy, winning the Intercontinental Champion title.

    Umaga fought CM Punk shortly before being released from the WWE again. After his contract ended with WWE, Umaga joined with the World Wrestling Council (WWC), appearing at the Hulk Hogan Hulkamania Tour of Australia. Umaga’s last match took place In November 2009.

    Umaga’s History Of Substance Abuse & Rehab

    Umaga was released by the WWE twice. In 2003, he was part of a bar fight which contributed to his ousting. In 2006, the media released the names of numerous WWE superstars who purchased drugs from an online pharmacy, including the WWE hall of famer Umaga.

    Because of this, the Wellness Policy of the WWE was amended to include the rule that wrestlers should not purchase drugs from online sellers. The Wellness Policy was violated in June 2009 by Umaga once again, leading to his final dismissal.

    There are no known instances of Umaga attempting treatment. In fact, after violating the Wellness Policy in 2009, Umaga refused to attend a drug rehab program for his substance abuse.

    Recovery Is Possible

    Umaga likely faced issues involving alcohol and prescription drug abuse. While he was encouraged to attend potentially life-saving treatment, he ultimately succumbed to the deadly effects of drug use.

    Thankfully, addiction recovery is possible by accessing evidence-based services at an accredited treatment center. For information on our substance abuse treatment options, please contact us today.

    Written by Ark Behavioral Health Editorial Team
    ©2024 Ark National Holdings, LLC. | All Rights Reserved.
    This page does not provide medical advice.
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