Waxahachie Daily Light – October 8, 2001
By Joann Livingston
Waxahachie Police responded to a 9-1-1 call early Sunday morning, finding pro wrestler “Gentleman” Chris Adams, 46, of Rowlett dead at a local residence.
“Mr. Adams died from a single gunshot wound to the chest,” said Justice of the Peace Pct. 2 Jackie Miller Jr., who pronounced him dead at the scene at 2 a.m.
The incident occurred after midnight at 219 Sendero in the Indian Hills subdivision, the residence of William Parnell, 49, a business associate and promoter of Adams’.
Parnell was arrested at the scene and later arraigned on a charge of murder. Bond was set at $300,000.
“Officers responded to a 9-1-1 call at that location,” Waxahachie detective Sgt. Nathan Bickerstaff said. “Someone called, saying they had just shot someone and they needed medical help.”
Entry was made into the house after Parnell was taken into custody; Parnell’s mother and aunt were at the residence, but were not awake at the time of the incident, Bickerstaff said.
“It is still under investigation,” said Bickerstaff, who is assisted in the investigation by detective Todd Woodruff. “We do know they were wrestling and there was possibly alcohol involved in it. They got a little carried away and got mad at each other and started getting too rough inside the house. What it appears is that Mr. Parnell shot Mr. Adams.”
Officers recovered a .38 caliber handgun at the scene.
Adams was found in the bedroom, lying on a bed, Bickerstaff said, with EMS efforts to resuscitate him unsuccessful.
Miller ordered an autopsy; the body was sent to the medical examiner’s office in Dallas.
There was no association between Adams and Parnell, and a pro wrestling event organized by local pro wrestler Tim Brooks Sr. held Saturday night at the Salvation Army Boys & Girls Club.
“They were not involved with us in any way. Neither one of them was at our event Saturday night,” said Brooks, who had known Adams for about 20 years, but who did not know Parnell.
“I’m really saddened that it happened here, that it happened anywhere.
“It really surprised me,” said Brooks. “I know Chris is married and has a 7-year-old daughter. That saddens me because it leaves his wife, and a 7-year-old child, without a parent.”
Recalling Adams’ life, Brooks said, “Chris was a guy that tried to live life to its fullest every day. He was a very upbeat type person and had a lot of energy. And he was a very, very good pro wrestler.”
Brooks said that Adams, who was originally from England, was a top wrestler during the Von Erich period, and still made occasional wrestling appearances.
“I really don’t know what to say about this,” Brooks said. “I don’t know any of the circumstances. All I know is that someone called me Sunday morning and told me the news. And I found it upsetting.”