AceShowbiz - Don West has passed away from cancer at the age of 59. The former TNA Impact Wrestling commentator and radio personality has died, 18 months after he was first diagnosed with brain lymphoma, a rare, aggressive form of the disease.
"IMPACT Wrestling is heartbroken to learn of the passing of Don West, one of the defining voices of our 20 year history. Don's enthusiasm and passion elevated every second he called and uplifted the spirits of everybody he crossed paths with. He will be dearly missed. #RIPDonWest," the wrestling company announced on Twitter on Friday, December 30.
His former commentating partner, Mike Tanay, also revealed he had heard the news from Don's wife Terri. He tweeted, "Just heard from wife Terri that our brother [Don West] will be spending New Years in heaven. Terri said D-Dub finally had to tap out from his match with lymphoma. We bonded as soon as we met, both as broadcast partners and friends. Years of great moments both on and off camera."
Just days before, Mike had shared a photo of Don and admitted he wouldn't "get a better Christmas gift" after the pair had connected via video call.
Impact Wrestling's Executive Vice President Scott D'Amore, paid tribute to Don's contribution to the wrestling world. He wrote in a statement, "You can't think about TNA/IMPACT without thinking of Don West. Don and Mike Tenay provided the soundtrack to so many iconic moments in company history."
"There was no more cherished member of the TNA/IMPACT family. Don was truly a one-of-a-kind who brightened every room he walked into. He brought out the best in people and was an inspiration to all who crossed paths with him."
"He was one of the first people I met upon arriving at the TNA Asylum for the first time, and Don instantly made me feel welcome. His warm heart and legendary sense of humor made every day at work something to look forward to."
"I am forever grateful for being able to share a friendship with Don and truly know my career and my life are better because of having him in them."
While Don was diagnosed with cancer in the summer of 2021, he announced in September that year that he was in remission "after 8 weeks of chemotherapy and 13 treatments."
Sadly, in January he told his Twitter followers the cancer had returned and, in May, he revealed the tumour had doubled in size. He wrote at the time, "Thank you so much for your support and donations. The tumor has doubled in size causing experimental treatment. Thanks Scott and Mike for reaching out. Bless you all (sic)."
He shared no further health updates on his account following that.
Don worked for TNA Impact from 2002 to 2012 but left to work for the Wenatchee Wild hockey organisation and on his own self-titled radio show. However, he briefly returned for the 15th anniversary of their pay-per-view event "Slammiversary" in 2017 after the company's founder, Jeff Jarett, appeared on Don's radio show to urge him to come back.
Before working in wrestling, Don was known for his presenting work on the Shop at Home Network.