Luke Harper – real name Jon Huber – passed away on Saturday, December 26 at the age of 41. His wife, Amanda, announced the sad news on her Instagram page, revealing that Huber died of a non-COVID related lung issue at the Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, Florida. Though he was working for AEW in the latter part of his life, he made a name for himself while working in WWE as Luke Harper.
A former WWE Intercontinental and tag team champion, Jon Huber was one of the most gifted men to ever enter the ring. Even pro-wrestling legend Chris Jericho recently claimed that he rarely saw the 41-year-old make mistakes, despite featuring in thousands of matches. Harper definitely left a legacy as one of the most beloved personalities and here are some of the incredible moments from his WWE career.
At No Mercy 2016, Bray Wyatt was in dire need of a helping hand as he was getting punished by Randy Orton. The Viper was close to ending the bout with an RKO, but the lights went out and Luke Harper appeared in the ring amid the screams of fans. Harper distracted Orton and gave enough time for Wyatt to deliver a Sister Abigail to win the bout.
Bray Wyatt introduced the world to Jon Huber on the November 7, 2012, episode of WWE NXT. The 41-year-old fought a very young Jason Jordan in his debut bout, scoring a win in a dominant fashion. A year later, Bray’s ‘Wyatt Family’ made their debut on WWE RAW, which also featured Erick Rowan, apart from Harper. The trio attacked Kane on their first day at the main roster and went on to feud with legends like Undertaker, John Cena and others.
Luke Harper’s biggest moment came at WrestleMania 34, where he faced The Usos and The New Day in a triple threat tag-team bout, while teaming up with his old friend Erick Rowan. Also known as The Bludgeon Brothers, Harper and Rowan dominated the bout from start to finish, eventually winning the prestigious WWE SmackDown Tag Team title.
From the get-go, it was very clear that Harper was a talented wrestler. He was able to keep up with the legends and boasted impressive speed, despite being nearly seven-foot tall. This could be a reason why WWE officials decided to take him out of Wyatt’s shadow and let him enjoy a solo run, even including him in a feud with then Intercontinental Champion Dolph Ziggler.
Both superstars fought for the title multiple times, with Harper winning the strap on the November 17, 2014, episode of WWE RAW. However, Ziggler regained the title at the TLC: Tables, Ladders & Chairs PPV, also ending Huber’s solo run.
On the January 31, 2017, episode of SmackDown, Luke Harper teamed up with WWE legend John Cena to face Randy Orton and Bray Wyatt in a massive tag-team match. The Viper was Wyatt’s prized pupil at the time, while Harper looked to take revenge from his previous master. The former Intercontinental Champion shined as he punished Randy Orton and Bray Wyatt throughout the bout before Orton recovered and hit Cena with an RKO to take the win.