Former WWE creative writer Patrice O'Neal passed away yesterday, a month after the comedian suffered a serious stroke that rendered him unable to speak. He was 41 years old.
O'Neal has appeared on numerous comedy shows, including being a regular guest on Comedy Central's Tough Crowd with Colin Quinn. His first hour-long special, Elephant in the Room, aired this past February on Comedy Central, and a feature-length version of the special was released shortly thereafter.
O'Neal spoke to Atlantic City Weekly last year about his time with WWE.
"It was actually a dream situation, but I think if I had kept doing it, it wouldn't have been a dream," said O'Neal. "When I stopped doing it, it was perfect. It was just to be able to say I did it and it was like, 'Wow, I actually got the job!' You know, you had to audition to get it so I actually wrote a scenario where they wanted me to write a finish to an existing beef and conclude it in a Pay-per-View match. I think I was doing the Undertaker and Triple H and I had to escalate it for three weeks and then end it with a Pay-per-View. At the time I was really into wrestling so that was easy to do and my writing sample got the job. It was fun; I flew around on a WWE jet, [got to] roll with some of the big-time wrestlers ... and directed a couple of vignettes.
"[WWE chairman and CEO] Vince McMahon was one of the few people I've ever seen that I was in complete awe of his presence, you know? He was the man, he was the boss. I learned a lot of things in like three days looking at Vince McMahon and how he operates; it was a hell of a thing. So when that ended it was almost like it should've ended cause it was a good experience and I didn't have to see anything I shouldn't see and didn't have to deal with anything I shouldn't have dealt with. It was just short and sweet."