This man was a professional wrestler 20 years ago, but a life-changing event transformed him from the inside out. Now he’s determined to inspire others, and especially the youth of America. He is empowering others to make positive changes to their lives with the most motivational speeches that come straight from his heart.
Marco Mero now spends his time talking, especially to young people through his non-profit organization, “Champion of Choices.”
Mero or “Johnny B. Badd,” as he was known in the ring, won the title of WWE Wrestling Champion in the 90s. It was when he was on a wrestling tour in Japan, he received a phone call from his promoter, who told him that his mom had passed away.
“I just threw the phone down. I ran out of my hotel room. I took the elevator to the lobby. When the doors opened up, I just ran out into the street in the middle of Hiroshima, Japan,” he says holding back the tears. “I remember looking up to say ‘Mom, I am so sorry.'”
He had become so focused on fame and money that he ignored any relationship with family, especially his number one fan and supporter—his mom. She had been with him through thick and thin, but he always found her presence annoying at sporting events; she seemed to be the one with the loud voice, cheering him on.
“She always asked if we could talk, which I never had time for and slammed my door and told her to leave me alone,” he said.
Then death took her—it was a huge wake-up call for Mero.
“It’s one of the most sobering feelings in the world that someone you care about and you don’t know how much you appreciate it until it’s gone, and you’re told she’s gone forever. An emptiness just came over me. I was in Hiroshima, Japan and was crying and said how sorry I was, but it was too late,” he said.
Mero decided to hang up his boxing gloves and become a motivational speaker. It was then that he had found his purpose in life and the importance of family. His father died in his arms, and both his siblings died when they were 21; these were all sobering events for him.
He spends his time talking to young people, inspiring his audience to keep to the right path in life, be mindful of the friends one chooses, and to cherish one’s loved ones. During one of his talks on Mother’s Day, he spoke of the pain he suffered on losing his mom.
“If you have a mother or a father, tell them how much you love them,” said Mero. “See, my whole life was about being rich and famous, that’s all I cared about. I had to win the race at the expense of my marriage, my family, [and] my friends. That’s not how it was intended to be.”
“I no longer live in time, I live in moment,” he told the audience of young teenagers. “It’s not what’s in your pocket that matters; it’s what in your heart that truly matters. Love is just a word, until somebody comes along and gives it meaning.”
There was hardly a dry eye in the house.
“I’m dedicating the rest of my life to helping young people know that there’s hope in this world,” Mero said. “Anyone can achieve their goals and dreams if they choose to believe!”
“My mom, she really empowered me to become special in sports.”
“The greatest gift my mother ever gave me was [that] she believed in me.”
Watch his inspiring and heartfelt video below:
Remember to care for your own family, tell them how you feel, communicate with them. You may regret if you leave it too late.