Wrestlers React To Shad Gaspard Going Missing, More Details On What Happened And The Search

Former WWE Superstar Shad Gaspard was in a group of swimmers that were pulled into a rip current at Venice Beach in California on Sunday, but he was the only one that went under, according to the local ABC News affiliate.

As noted, Gaspard remains missing after his 10 year old son was rescued by lifeguards. Gaspard directed rescuers to help his son first, and they did. Another large wave reportedly crashed down on Gaspard and that was the last time he was seen. Los Angeles Fire Department lifeguard specialist Pono Barnes told ABC7 that Gaspard was the only person to submerge.

"That group was stuck in one of the rip currents and were swimming just north of the lifeguard tower," said Barnes. "That's why lifeguards were able to get there so soon, but unfortunately, one did, however, submerge."

The 39 year old Gaspard went under at around 4pm local time on Sunday. Helicopters, divers and boats spent hours searching for him until "subsurface searches" were suspended by lifeguards just before sundown. The search continued this morning at around 7am local time.

The incident happened on a day when the surf and the weather created challenging conditions. "That surf that we have paired with a little bit of wind and good tidal swing today made rip currents a little bit more prevalent and a little bit stronger," Barnes said.

Shad's wife, Siliana Gaspard, remained on the beach during the rescue and was seen staring out into the ocean while the Coast Guard searched, according to photos from The Daily Mail. They added that Siliana later left the beach with close friends.

"I saw the young boy who was inconsolable and his mother who had her arms wrapped around him," said one onlooker to The Daily Mail. "The whole thing was just heartbreaking, absolutely heartbreaking to see this mother and child in complete despair."

Gaspard's son was unharmed and later walked off the beach with an adult friend of the family for around 15 minutes, while his mother remained on the beach during the first part of the search.

Kenichi Haskett of the LA County Fire Department Lifeguard Division also issued a statement on the incident: "We had one of our lifeguards go out to make a double rescue of a father and a son. The father unfortunately got pushed down by a wave as they were getting pulled out of the current. The lifeguard rescued and grabbed the boy, the son, and tried to grab the father as well. He ended up getting pushed down by a wave and we couldn't find him and we immediately started with our rescue boats, called in additional lifeguards to search that location of his dad."

Siliana and her son were seen back at the beach again on Monday morning, sitting under a tent officials put up due to the raining weather. The Daily Mail added that neighbors have provided Siliana and her son with water, blankets and chairs, noting that they remained at the same location since the incident. One neighbor who lives right on the beach, just steps away from the incident, has also opened his doors for them in case they need a bathroom or place to rest.

Officials in the water were battling the rain and choppy waters as they resumed the rescue attempt. In addition to the boats, divers and helicopters, the LA County Lifeguards division noted on Twitter that their Marine Technical Search Team was working with Baywatch Del Rey to conduct side scanning sonar of the area today.

"Every effort will be made to locate this gentleman, he is somebody's family member, and we all have family, so we will not rest until we feel that every effort has been made to locate him," LASD Deputy Trina Schrader told reporters Monday.

It was also reported by CBS Los Angeles that Shad and his son were around 700 feet away from shore when the incident happened on Sunday.

As noted, there is still no official update on Shad or the status of the search. Stay tuned as we will keep you updated.

Below are various comments on Shad from WWE Superstars and Hall of Famers, AEW stars, and others from the pro wrestling world: