Hana Kimura Passes Away Aged 22

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Hana Kimura
Photo: @chiyusho

On Friday May 22, fans became very concerned when Hana Kimura posted graphic pictures of self-harm to her Twitter, along with various tweets hinting at suicidal thoughts.  The tweets were deleted and fans were left wondering what Kimura’s status was.  Hours later, Kimura’s home promotion Stardom confirmed that the 22-year old star had in fact passed away with no cause of death released yet.  Unfortunately, Kimura had become the victim of cyberbullying and online harassment during her participation in the reality show Terrace House following an incident with a fellow housemate who accidentally shrunk the gear she wore at Wrestle Kingdom.

Hana Kimura was a second-generation star – her mother Kyoko Kimura was the founder of Oedo Tai, a faction that Hana would become synonymous with.  Kimura started her career in 2016 and was tied to WRESTLE-1, where she formed a team with fellow Joshi indie name ASUKA.  On top of her WRESTLE-1 work, she freelanced in various promotions including Stardom.  It is in Stardom that Kimura would have most of her success, as she quickly joined Oedo Tai and became second in command to new leader Kagetsu.  The short-lived Oedo Tai lineup of Kagetsu, Kimura, Tam Nakano, and Kris Wolf was by far the most popular, and is remembered to this day by fans due to the fun interactions between the characters.

In late 2018 Kimura turned on Oedo Tai and launched herself to stardom when she set up her own faction the Tokyo Cyber Squad.  The cybergoth aesthetic and general carefree attitude of the group quickly made them a favorite amongst fans.  It was with TCS that Kimura enjoyed her best spell in Stardom winning the Artist Of Stardom Championships and then going on to win the 2019 5STAR Grand Prix (Stardom’s version of the G1).

While Kimura failed to win the World Of Stardom Championship following her GP win most fans were of the mind that it was just a matter of time before Kimura got her hands on the belt as her charisma, star power, and in-ring skill made her a perfect candidate to lead the company forward, something Stardom clearly agreed with as she was of only four talents chosen to perform at NJPW’s Wrestle Kingdom 14.

With her passing Hana Kimura becomes one of wrestling’s greatest what if’s, as it was considered a guarantee that she would go on to international stardom someday. Not only was Kimura a talented in-ring performer, but since her worrying tweets, fans and colleagues alike have shared stories about how kind Hana Kimura was.  She was a kind-hearted person who made gaijin talents feel at home and made sure that every fan came away from meeting her with a smile and a memorable experience.

Later in her career, her catchphrase was “everybody’s different, everybody’s special, yes sir!” she was unashamedly herself at all times and encouraged others to be themselves too, one need look no further than her friendship with the transgender ASUKA to see that Hana Kimura loved everybody no matter their differences.

Professional wrestling has lost one of its kindest souls.  We salute you Hana. Yes sir!

LWOPW sends its sincere condolences to the entire Kimura family, her friends, peers, and colleagues. Stay tuned to the Last Word on Pro Wrestling for more on this and other stories from around the world of wrestling, as they develop. You can always count on LWOPW to be on top of the major news in the wrestling world, as well as to provide you with analysis, previews, videos, interviews, and editorials on the wrestling world.

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