At the height of his fame, Andre the Giant was the most popular wrestler in the world. Despite achieving massive success in his lifetime, the gigantic wrestler never got married. However, he did have a daughter. Sadly, that daughter and Andre had an estranged relationship from birth. And she only recalls having ever seen her father five times before his death in 1993. Join Facts Verse as Andre the Giant’s daughter reveals the ugly truth.
Andre Roussimoff, a wrestler that better known by his stage name “Andre the Giant”, never married. However, he did have one biological child before his death in 1993. This child is Robin Christensen-Roussimoff. Robin’s mother is Jean Christensen, who worked alongside Andre for a time in the wrestling scene. Andre and Jean met sometime in the early 1970s. Robin was born only a couple of years after their initial meeting. For numerous reasons, Andre was essentially absent from his daughter’s life. This absence took a toll on both of them. And became one of the wrestler’s biggest regrets by the end of his life.
Robin can only remember having seen her father around five times over the course of her entire life. A few of these time were public appearances that the young girl made alongside her father in the ring as scheduled publicity stunts. The remaining times were appearance that the young girl made alongside her mother in court as she was attempting to get more child support from the wrestler. One such court appearance proved to be the last time that Robin ever saw her father. So it’s safe to say that the two didn’t have a very close relationship. Still, Andre made some minor efforts.
Robin’s first memory of her father was when he showed up to the blood test that was going to prove that she was really the wrestler’s daughter. This is a good indication of how separated Andre was from both Robin and her mother at the point that Robin was born. Robin’s mother raised her to have little interest in the sport of wrestling; preferring that her daughter form an opinion of her father that wasn’t based on his celebrity status. While this proved effective, it also kept the girl from knowing much about her father at all.
Whenever an attempt made by Andre to connect with his daughter, the wrestler’s neuroses got in the way. Andre always had a complex about standing out in a crowd, and he didn’t enjoy meeting his daughter in public places because he feared that she would be gawked at for being around him. Since Andre had a troubled relationship with Robin’s mother, domestic visits were out of the question. Andre had a ranch in North Carolina that he often invited his daughter to visit. However, the young girl feel uncomfortable doing so without her mother’s accompaniment, and her mother not interested in interacting with Andre on that level.
Although Robin recalls only seeing her father five times in person, the two managed to get to know each other while Andre was alive through phone calls. Their last phone conversation together said to have taken place in December of 1992. Less than a month later, Andre passed away at the age of only 46. The wrestler had suffered from numerous health problems over the course of his life. Many of which cause by the affliction that made him so big.
After her father’s death, Robin didn’t attend the funeral service. This was likely the result of her mother and father’s estranged relationship. Still, Robin continues to treasure the few memories of her father she has. Even if several of them occurred in the middle of a courthouse.
Today, Robin has control over his father’s estate due to the fact that she was his only biological heir and he never married. She doesn’t mind allowing her father’s likeness to be used in most situations. As she feels that spreading awareness of her father contributes to his legacy. She has consulted on comic books featuring her father, and is still receiving royalties from her father’s work in wrestling.
When Robin grew older, she began to become more curious about who her father was on a personal level. This led the woman to try and get in contact with some figures that knew her father personally. One such figure that Robin managed to get ahold of was actor Cary Elwes, who worked alongside Andre in the classic fantasy film The Princess Bride. Robin and Cary formed an unlikely friendship. Exactly as Cary had done with Robin’s father many years ago on the set of the film. This allowed Robin to reconnect with her father well after his death.
While any estranged daughter would likely want to learn more about their biological father, few would have such interesting fathers to learn about as Andre the Giant. The 500-pound 7-foot wrestler was one of the most popular figures in the industry during the height of his fame. This was due not only to his staggering stature, but also his charm.
Andre was born in the French Alps in 1946. Despite his parents as regular-sized people. His grandfather said to have been even taller than Andre grew up to be! As soon as Andre came out, his father could tell that the baby had inherited his grandfather’s genes due to his immense size.
Whether due to his size or due to increased maturity. Andre ventured off from home earlier than most other kids did, even at the time. Andre was capable of doing intensive physical labor when he was only 12 years old. And found himself capable of living independently at the age of 14. At the age of 16, Andre made his official entry into the world of professional wrestling. Over the ensuing decade, the young man would become one of it’s most popular figures.
Despite the success that Andre’s immense size brought the wrestling star within his industry, it proved a curse in many other aspects of his life. Children loved watching Andre on television, but they ran away when they encountered the intimidating figure in the real world. Andre used to say that he would give anything to be able to experience life as an average-sized man, and the curse of living with his condition was sometimes too much for him to deal with.
The condition that caused Andre to be so big was more than just simple genetics. Andre suffered from a condition known as acromegaly. This condition caused Andre’s body to produce an overabundance of growth hormone. In addition to causing Andre to be abnormally large, this condition also filled Andre’s face with growths, giving it a strange shape.
Andre’s size caused him to be alienated from other people, and the wrestler took to self-medicating with copious amounts of alcohol. While a normal alcoholic might be satiated with a six-pack every night. Andre’s alcohol consumption was the type that could close out entire bars. The wrestler’s alcohol consumption was well-known, though many didn’t realize the dark secret that caused Andre to turn to the substance. Not only did alcohol quell Andre’s emotional pain, but it also quelled the physical pain that increasingly caused by Andre’s wrestling career.
As Andre grew older, his performance in the ring was taking a bigger toll on his body. By the time that Andre performing in The Princess Bride, his back crippled from his years of wrestling that he needed his female costar to be lifted with invisible wires in order to make it appear as if Andre capable of lifting her up. Andre also turning to alcohol increasingly while filming the classic fantasy movie, and reportedly got so drunk on set one day that he fell over on one of the crew members. Still, most of the cast and crew had only fond memories of Andre after filming.
After Andre’s appearance in The Princess Bride, he convinced by WWE CEO Vince McMahon to appear in WrestleMania III. The big event saw Andre essentially passing the torch to nemesis Hulk Hogan once and for all, with Hulk delivering a devastating blow to Andre at the event’s end. However, Andre’s failing back needed special preparation before it was ready for the performance.
In order to prepare Andre for WrestleMania III, Vince McMahon paid for the wrestler to undergo experimental back surgery. Andre relented, and the event became wrestling history! Despite the fact that Andre and Hulk always poised as bitter rivals on the screen, the two said to have been great friends behind the scenes. Because of this, Andre likely relished the opportunity to give Hulk the victory.
Andre died a little over half of a decade after WrestleMania III. Though it’s not from the damage that had been done to his back. Andre was visiting France to mourn the death of his father, and passed away himself during the visit. One morning, the wrestler’s heart had simply stopped beating. Fluid had been swelling up around Andre’s heart for a number of years, and it had finally given in.
Andre’s dying wishes were to have his body cremated. Though there was no crematorium in France that was capable of incinerating a corpse of such magnitude. Thankfully, some of Andre’s dedicated cohorts had the corpse flown back to America. Andre cremated into nearly 20 pounds of ash; which scattered about the wrestler’s beloved ranch in North Carolina.
According to claims from those that knew him, Andre the Giant was capable of drinking well over 100 beers in a night. Comment down below if you believe the legends about Andre the Giant’s drinking abilities. Or if you are one of the many fans that are saddened by the tale of the legendary wrestler’s early death and estranged daughter.