Where Are They Now? Shawn Stasiak

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June 19, 2013

Today, the man WWE fans once called Meat is better known to his patients as Dr. Shawn. After receiving his certification in 2007, Stasiak settled down in Dallas — the city where his father once terrorized The Von Erichs — and started a growing practice.

“It’s such a blessing to be able to make so many positive life changes for people, to get them out of debilitating pain and to guide them to a better quality of life not just physically, but mentally and spiritually,” Stasiak said.

See more recent photos of Shawn Stasiak

His interest in helping people has also led the former WWE Superstar to pursue a passion for motivational speaking. Years ago, when Stasiak was still at Boise State, he developed an alter ego he called Fobia. The character’s strange origin story began after Stasiak found a nest of spiders living under his bed. The incident horrified him, but it also led him to create a persona inspired by larger-than-life figures like Ultimate Warrior and KISS’ Gene Simmons. Painted up as the heroic Fobia, Stasiak delivered public service messages to children on local Boise TV around Halloween time. (He later used these videos to help grab WWE’s attention back in 1998.)

Today, Stasiak dresses up as Fobia to talk to school children about facing their fears and bringing an end to bullying.

Learn more about Shawn Stasiak's alter ego, Fobia

“It’s something that’s near and dear to my heart,” Stasiak said. “I love kids. I’m a big kid myself. But we’ve got an obesity issue going on with our kids. We’ve got a bullying issue going on. It’s so important to plant the seed at an early age and to make a difference.”

Although he has established a good life for himself in Dallas, Stasiak expressed a serious desire to return to the ring to chase the WWE Title in tribute to his late father. Is a comeback out of the question? Not exactly. Recent photos show that Stasiak hasn’t aged a day since he was last in the ring more than a decade ago. But is it necessary?

“I’m not big on dissuading anybody from chasing their dreams, but I feel like he is now on the path that is right for him,” Jim Ross said.

Indeed, Stasiak has gained the confidence and maturity that he lacked in his early ring years, which has naturally led the good doctor to imagine what he could have done differently. The talented athlete had every gift necessary to make it in sports-entertainment; it was just the mental aspect of things that held him back.

“I didn’t realize it back then, but I put a lot of pressure on myself,” Stasiak admitted. “I just don’t think I dealt with my father’s death.”

More than a decade since Stan “The Man” Stasiak’s passing, the loss resonates with his son. Even at 42, Shawn is still a big kid trying to make the old man proud. But while the second-generation competitor looks toward a comeback, he seems to have missed the fact that he has already arrived.

“I think [Shawn Stasiak] has become his own man,” J.R. said. “At the end of the day, that’s a very happy ending to the story.”

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