A Different Perspective With Jon Harder
HUSH: Overcoming Adversity
There comes along a time where a certain person truly inspires a locker room to live their dream. Some overcome their adversity to prove others wrong. Others rise above tremendous health and mental issues to shut the naysayers up and become a success. However, in an industry where interaction with an audience is key and vocalizing your happiness and sadness is protocol, one man has been able to start a career based on the antithesis of that. He is the first ever deaf and mute professional wrestler in this great sport and has turned his disability into the most motivational tale I have ever heard. This man is simply known as HUSH.
Jamel “Hush” Holiday has had a rough life. Born in New York City, it was found out early on in Hush’s life that Hush had a few disabilities growing up. Jamel was born deaf and furthermore, also had a diagnosis of mutism as well. Although suffering from this disability early on in life, Jamel never lost his smile and always had a positive outlook on life. Coming from a loving family, Hush definitely utilized them to push through life, in particular when he became enthralled with the world of professional wrestling as a youngster.
“My mom and I always enjoyed wrestling when I was a little boy,” Hush told me through email, “and of course, when I wanted advice on not only wrestling, but in life, I went to my dad and my granny.”
Enter 2008, when Hush decided he wanted to become a professional wrestler, with help from his family, he received his initial training from Kevin Knight’s IWF school in Patterson, NJ, however, it wasn’t until he went to the ACE Wrestling Academy in the later part of 2010, that Hush really started to get his feet wet within the realm of the squared circle.
“Jorge Luis Rivera and Jay Lethal have definitely helped me a lot. I like their training they’ve given me,” wrote Hush.
It was always a little more difficult for Hush to learn and understand the basics in the ring, especially with his disability, which might make things harder to learn. However, Hush, despite his struggles sometimes, never let it stop him.
“My disability hurts me at times, because I don’t fully understand some things,” Hush wrote, “but it is also an advantage, because it shows people to be the best you can be and to never give up. That is my drive.”
And in the spring of 2011, Hush was finally able to live his dream, as he made his professional wrestling debut for Middle Village Wrestling, winning his first ever contest. Over the next few months, Hush continued to perfect his craft. However, in the summer of 2011, Hush’s life took a bit of a setback, as he lost his mother after a long illness. Even now, you can see Hush still coming to terms with her death.
“My mom passed away and she influenced me a lot, of course,” Hush wrote, “but I feel great knowing she’s looking down on me, watching over me.”
However, in his first match following her death on July 16, 2011, Hush, with his mother’s face tattooed on his right bicep, brought his A game, and via his “Silent Strong Elbow”, picked up the big win at MvW against Sean Diaz. (For the match click here.)
Hush has continuously worked his way up the ladder, now wrestling with partner Chris Cayden, in a team quite simply known as “Quiet Riot”, for American Championship Entertainment. Cayden, who actually is able to talk to Hush through sign language, is very proud to being teaming up with such a humble and inspirational young man.
“Without a doubt, he's so talented, and the fact that I am able to sign with him does help with the bond. Fact is though he is a cool dude!” stated Cayden.
Jamel Holiday is a humble, young family man who has overcome so much in life. Within the wrestling realm, he has inspired locker rooms all over the circuit and using his deaf-mute disability to the absolute most of his abilities. Jamel has proven all of his naysayers wrong, and quite frankly, have made everyone who doubts him…