AJ Lee burst onto the WWE scene in 2011 and immediately captured the hearts of fans with her quirky personality and fearless in-ring style. Though small in stature, AJ proved size doesn‘t matter when it comes to determination and skill. She became a 3-time Divas Champion and continues to inspire young women to follow their dreams.
|Full Name||April Jeanette Mendez|
|Birthday||March 19, 1987|
|Born||Union City, New Jersey, United States|
|Net Worth||$4 million|
|Social Media||Instagram, Twitter|
Early Life and Career Beginnings
Born April Jeanette Mendez, AJ Lee grew up in Union City, New Jersey with three siblings. She was an avid sports fan and excelled in soccer, baseball, and swimming competitions as a kid. After graduating high school in 2005, AJ began seriously pursuing her dream of becoming a professional wrestler.
She started training and working for various independent wrestling promotions between 2007-2009 under the ring name Miss April. Gaining experience and honing her craft on the indie circuit prepared AJ for the big leagues. In 2009, AJ attended a WWE tryout and immediately caught the organization‘s attention, signing a developmental contract soon after.
WWE Career Highlights
AJ Lee made her WWE main roster debut in 2011 as part of a storyline with Daniel Bryan that quickly propelled her into the spotlight. Fans were immediately drawn to her nerdy, unfiltered persona that broke the mold of the typical WWE Diva. AJ proved she could hang with the boys, competing in intergender matches against Bryan, CM Punk, and Kane.
Her biggest accomplishments include:
- Winning the Divas Championship 3 times between 2013-2015
- Holding the title for a record-setting 295 days
- Main eventing Raw against Nikki Bella in 2014
- Competing in the first women‘s WrestleMania match in 7 years at WrestleMania 30
- Headlining pay-per-views like Payback and Survivor Series
- Engaging in high-profile feuds with stars like Paige, Nikki Bella, and Natalya
AJ Lee retired in 2015 as one of WWE‘s most popular female stars. She helped redefine women‘s wrestling through her passionate performances and vocal advocacy for more opportunities.
Life After WWE
Since retiring from the ring, AJ has focused on other creative passions like writing. In 2017, she published a memoir titled "Crazy is My Superpower" where she chronicles her struggles with mental health issues and overcoming obstacles. She advocates for reducing stigma around mental illness.
AJ married fellow wrestler Phil "CM Punk" Brooks in 2014. The two reside happily in Chicago with their adorable dogs. AJ maintains an active social media presence and still keeps up with WWE, cheering on the women she helped pave the way for. She remains a role model for female empowerment.
Why Fans Adore AJ Lee
AJ Lee connected with fans in such a powerful way for many reasons:
- Her authenticity and unique personality – AJ stayed true to herself
- Her underdog mentality – She never backed down despite her smaller stature
- Her wrestling skills – AJ had an arsenal of innovative, dynamic moves
- Her aura of coolness – She had an effortless, magnetic star presence
- Her inspiring story – Overcoming struggles to achieve her dreams
AJ Lee remains one of the most beloved, influential divas in WWE history. Though her career was relatively short, it shined incredibly bright. She redefined female wrestling through her groundbreaking matches, unapologetic persona, and diehard passion for the business. AJ Lee is the ultimate role model for being yourself and fighting for your dreams.