Who is Akebono Taro as sumo wrestler passed, cause of death, bio, age, height and wife

Who is Akebono Taro as sumo wrestler passed, cause of death, bio, age, height and wife

The wrestling community is mourning the tragic demise of renowned Akebono Taro as the wrestler left us for his heavenly abode, have a look at his cause of death, wife, bio, age and height

For unversed, a revered figure in the world of sumo wrestling, Akebono Taro, who clinched 11 grand tournaments throughout his illustrious career, has passed away at the age of 54.

Who is Akebono Taro as sumo wrestler passed, cause of death, bio, age, height, family and wife

As per reports, age 54 Taro’s cause of death is seemed to be heart failure. The legendary wrestler had been struggling with an illness since he collapsed in Kitakyushu, Japan, seven years prior, and had been reportedly hospitalized near Tokyo.

According to Taro’s family, Akebono, born Chad George Ha’aheo Rowan in Hawaii, passed away earlier this month while undergoing treatment. The statement made by wrestler’s family reads “It is with sadness that we announce Akebono Taro died of heart failure earlier this month while receiving care at a hospital in the Tokyo area.”

His wife of more than two decades, Christiane Reiko Kalina, announced the star’s passing.

At the prime of his career he was reported at the time to weigh 500 pounds (225 kilos) and stand 6-feet-8 inches tall.

About Akebono Taro

For the unfamiliar, Akebono made history as the first non-Japanese grand champion, or “yokozuna.” He began his sumo journey in Tokyo in March 1988 after relocating there in the late 1980s.


A few years after he began his career path as sumo wrestler, Akebono clinched his inaugural grand championship in 1993. The legendary wrestler as being the foreign-born grand champion, paved the path for fellow international wrestlers to join and excel in sumo wrestling.

After making his name in the sump wrestling community, the wrestler joined WrestleMania 21 in Log Angeles where he face off against the superstar The Big Show in 2005. The massive stature star whose height was 6 feet 8 inches and weighed 500 pounds forcefully ejected his opponent out of the ring.

Tributes Poured In

After learning the tragic news of Akebono Taro’s demise, the U.S. Ambassador to Japan, Rahm Emanuel, took to X/Twitter to honor Akebono. He recognize him as a towering figure in the realm of sumo.


While expressing his deep sorrow, Rahm Emanuel, wrote “I was deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Akebono, a giant in the world of sumo, a proud Hawaiian and a bridge between the United States and Japan, Emanuel posted.

“When Akebono became the first-ever foreign-born grand champion, sumo’s highest rank, in 1993, he opened the door for other foreign wrestlers to find success in the sport.”

The Ambassador Emanuel further added that “Throughout his 35 years in Japan, Akebono strengthened the cultural ties between the United States and his adopted homeland by uniting us all through sport.”


Akebono Taro is survived by his wife, two sons and a daughter. A private funeral will be soon held for the legendary sumo wrestler. However the details regarding funeral is yet to be revealed by the family.

We extend our heartfelt condolences and sympathies to the family and friends of Akebono Taro in this difficult time. May his departed soul rest in peace.

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