TMZ.com has confirmed our original report that Paul Bearer's family signed off on the CM Punk-Urn angle, which is being used to build the Undertaker vs. CM Punk match at WrestleMania 29.
Michael Moody, the son of Paul Bearer (William Moody), has stated that WWE's creative team approached the family when they were at RAW about doing the angle, and asked permission. Michael had the following to say about the angle…
"We felt that dad would have wanted us at RAW last week and agreed to the angle … We knew Dad wouldn't have wanted it any other way."
We reported the following on March 11th, 2013:
As seen on RAW this week, the show opened with a moment of silence as the company took the chance to reflect on the life and times of one of the most unique, legendary managers in the business, William "Paul Bearer" Moody. The Undertaker then came to the ring as only the Phenom could. An urn was centered in the ring, an iconic item of both the Dead Man and Bearer, and Taker kneeled in tribute. As this was happening, CM Punk's music hits and 'Taker and the crowd both seem shocked and appalled. Punk attempted to quell the crowd and wished to extend his heartfelt condolences and apologies to 'Taker ... at WrestleMania 29. Punk said that "To Paul Bearer, Undertaker will always be perfect. To everyone else, in four weeks, Taker will be 20-1."
This shouldn't come as a shock to those of you who read this website. We hinted in an exclusive report earlier that WWE had plans for CM Punk to "mock" Paul Bearer's death. In an exclusive update on this, I received a text message from a family member of William "Paul Bearer" Moody after the RAW segment aired. When I asked why they allowed WWE to do it, they simply stated that Moody always knew it was just entertainment and would have almost surely approved of it. The family member confirmed to me that his two sons were backstage at RAW and talked to WWE management, Kane and The Undertaker earlier in the day. The sons agreed to a "stipulation" where the company would air a tribute video first, make it respectful and then and only then run with the CM Punk angle. The family 100% approved of the tribute and segment. The Undertaker also had a major say in what went down on RAW. WWE also agreed to run tribute videos throughout the show. That was an idea that The Undertaker suggested and WWE had no problem airing the videos. Kevin Dunn put together the videos during the afternoon hours with input from 'Taker, Kane and Michael and Daniel (the two sons).
We reported the following on Monday evening here on the website:
As noted earlier here on the website, the sons of the late William "Paul Bearer" Moody, Michael and Daniel, are currently backstage visiting at tonight's WWE Monday Night RAW in Indianapolis, Indiana. There is no word if they will appear on camera during the broadcast tonight.
Also as we noted earlier this morning here on the website, a Paul Bearer tribute video was shown on the mini-titantron prior to WWE live events this weekend. There is currently no word on if this will air on tonight's WWE RAW broadcast, but a mention of some sort is likely.
In an update on the aforementioned story, WWE invited Michael and Daniel to "do something special" for Moody on RAW tonight. We're told the kids are good friends with Michael Hayes, who had been close to the former "Paul Bearer" for years now. There was talk of doing an angle on RAW involving the sons and CM Punk and The Undertaker. The Undertaker is rumored for tonight's show. Some feel it is likely that Hayes will attempt to talk the sons into some kind of involvement on the show tonight.
One source close to the late William Moody said that whatever is done (if anything), Moody would have said "go for it!". William always knew that it was only entertainment and would have been ok with anything that is done, even if it involves besmirching his death in some around-about fashion. That will sound crazy to some, but knowing how Vince McMahon is and as noted above, William would have almost surely approved of it.
The source also noted: "In the old school day, we would have Punk come out and dog the boys and their dad. Punk would lay out the boys and 'Taker makes the save. I know Percy would have been fine with this but the boys are still fragile. Hayes can talk anyone into doing anything."
It's also possible that WWE will do something more classy with the current PG era, as well as trying not to scare Bruno Sammartino off before he's inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame later this year.
As we exclusively reported last Thursday here on the website, a visitation was held on Friday night in Mobile, Alabama with the funeral held on Saturday morning at 10:00AM. The visitation on Friday took place from 4:00-5:00PM for family members only and then a public viewing for friends and fans was held from 5:00-8:00PM. The family tells us numerous fans showed up to pay their respects. They were very pleased to see that and some fans and friends took long flights to attend the service. The funeral took place on Saturday morning at St. Vincent's cemetery. R.I.P William .... you were taken from us too soon and you'll be missed.
We'll keep you posted as we hear more.