Instagram: bowens_official
Instagram: bowens_official

Anthony Bowens has made history as the first openly gay wrestler to win an AEW championship. 

On 22 September, Bowens and his wrestling partner Max Caster hit the ring to compete against Kieth Lee and Swerve Strickland in AEW’s coveted Grand Slam tag team championship.

While the two – who are also known as The Acclaimed – endured a tough match against their competitors, the duo ended up victorious – resulting in Bowens landing his historic win. 

“When my Nana passed in 2015, I promised her I’d be a success. Nana, I made it! AEW’s first Gay Champion. Most tag team wins in AEW. Most popular team in wrestling,” he wrote on social media.

A few days after he secured the title, Bowens gave further insight regarding his monumental win in an emotional video on Twitter.

“I want to take a second on something that I don’t really talk about much on camera. Some of you know, some of you may not know, but I never thought I’d be able to have a moment like this,” he said between tears.

“I never thought I would be able to live my dreams because there was a time where I was very confused, and I didn’t know how to accept myself, but I fought through that bulls**t.”

At the end of his video, Bowens gave one last inspiring message to his LGBTQ+ fans, stating: “Just know that everything gets better. We’re living proof of that.”

In response to his heartwarming statement, AEW enthusiasts took to social media to inundate the 31-year-old with encouraging comments. 

One fan wrote: “As a gay man, I also struggled with accepting myself for who I truly was! Seeing you win those titles brought a tear to my eyes. It was amazing! You 100% deserve this moment and more!”

Another user tweeted: “You guys deserve this penultimate glory after all that hard work and dedication that you worked so hard for. You pushed and pushed forward and didn’t stop didn’t give up, did not quit, and you got what you wanted and what you deserved. Congratulations, guy.” 

Watch Bowens’ emotional statement here or below.