markus crane dead at 33
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Who was Markus Crane? Independent wrestler passes away at age 33

Markus Crane, a noted independent wrestler making a comeback from a traumatic brain injury and surgery, died Monday at age 33.

Markus Crane, a famed independent wrestler, passed away at age 33.

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Game Changer Wrestling shared the news Monday on its social media profile, with a number of other wrestling sites and fans joining in online tributes following the news.

Crane helped create GCW, and was an avid wrestler until he suffered a traumatic brain injury (TBI) in 2019. According to the GoFundMe account created for him, Crane (whose real name was Mark Pobanz) was admitted to a Las Vegas hospital for emergency neurosurgery. At the time, organizers of the fund (including his cousin) projected a long road to recovery, including possible additional surgeries and antibiotic treatments.

Fans began sharing their messages of heartache when the news of his passing was announced this morning, ranging from one well-wisher who claimed, “I know he was having a hard time but damn,” to more than one reveling in some of his greatest moments in the ring.

SB Nation blog Cageside Seats, in its account of Crane’s passing, noted that the wrestler “did work his first match since 2019 for the company in April, answering Kit Osbourne’s open challenge and quickly defeating him.”

It also added, based on “accounts from friends and co-workers,” that Crane died in his sleep after saying he was “suffering from a headache, and generally not feeling well.” The article also noted that “Crane had recently marked 30 days sober.”

There were no immediate announcements from GCW about possible tributes to Crane at future events, including a Feb. 25 and 26 event in Los Angeles.


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Ashley Marie
Ashley Marie is a staff writer, beat leader, Disney fanatic, and Yellowstone expert. When she's not filling her friends in on all the entertainment news they can handle, she's drinking her go-to Starbucks order — a caramel macchiato, thank you — and wishing she was at Disney World or spending time at the Yellowstone Dutton Ranch. With a focus on positivity and kindness in journalism, Ashley has been writing for a decade and hopes to keep bringing you articles for decades to come.