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  September 30, 2001

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READER ALERT: For all the latest wrestling happenings, check out our News & Rumours section.

Hart's condition improves

Matriarch of legendary wrestling family on the mend after brush with death

By TONY SESKUS -- Calgary Sun
 Helen Hart, matriarch of Calgary's legendary wrestling family, is fighting back following a near-death health scare.

 The 76-year-old wife of wrestling pioneer Stu Hart remains in critical condition after being rushed to Foothills emergency on Friday after she began feeling groggy and experienced trouble speaking.

 Family fears worsened after she suffered a seizure and momentarily stopped breathing.

 But daughter Ellie Neidhart reported some good news yesterday, explaining that her feisty mom's condition had improved somewhat and doctors had ruled out a stroke as the source of her troubles.

 "She's better than she was," Ellie said. "They are going to run some more tests to see what's going on, but I think basically it's diabetes-related and we'll see what happens when we get her blood sugars back up where they should be."

 The family has been keeping a bedside vigil for Helen since she arrived at hospital.

 Ellie said the family noticed subtle changes in her mom after she returned home from a visit with her sister in San Francisco on Tuesday.

 In the morning, Helen's husband, Stu, noticed her condition had worsened, and paramedics were called to the home in southwest Calgary.

 A spokeswoman for the Calgary Health Region said Helen was listed in critical but stable condition yesterday.

 She had not yet regained consciousness yesterday morning, but Ellie thought it was due to medication and not a coma.

 Helen Hart is the much-loved matriarch of the famous wrestling family, which helped build the sport into a multimillion-dollar industry.

 The Harts created Stampede Wrestling, which proved the launch pad for some of the sport's greatest performers.

 Two of the family's sons, Bret (The Hitman) Hart and Owen Hart, became world-renowned celebrities.

 Owen's life was cut short in a tragic pro-wrestling stunt in May 1999.

 Stu Hart, 86, was hospitalized earlier this year after suffering from pneumonia and heart troubles.

More on The Hart Family

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