As many of you know, Ethel Johnson was inducted into the Legacy Wing of the WWE Hall of Fame over the weekend but the footage that aired wasn’t of the wrestler. Now, Johnson’s family has come out and they aren’t happy about the gaffe. For those who didn’t see it, WWE mistakenly used footage of Sandy Parker. Parker made her debut much later than Johnson. Johnson’s granddaughter Michaiah Goodwin took to Twitter, saying,
“Y’all need to fix this because if you’re going to use my aunt Ethel in the hall of fame at least reach out to the family! And the video you guys used isn’t her! Ethel Johnson was the FIRST BLACK CHAMPION EVER! If you’re going to represent her, represent her CORRECTLY!”
During a recent interview with Chris Bournea, the family spoke out about the mistake. Johnson’s daughter Shelly Adams said, “They inducted her as the first African American female wrestler. She needs to be inducted as the first African American female champion. They did not contact anybody. I didn’t get any contact until after I reached out and saw what they put up. I contacted WWE. They contacted me back, I told them what the errors were in the video. They said they were going to correct it. They didn’t know when the corrections were going to be made. They recently reached out to me and said they made the corrections, but I can’t find the original advertisement or video. I don’t know what they corrected.”
Johnson’s niece Kim Goodwin Martin added, “How come you didn’t invite us to accept the award on behalf of my aunt? You didn’t call us because you knew you were doing wrong. They had plenty of time to get the information. They decided to put out what they wanted to put out. What they put out was untrue. It should be on the site with a big apology. They only care when something blows up. If it wasn’t for articles, I’m not even sure they would’ve tried to change it.”
Adams says the family wants WWE to make things right, saying, “If they come out, apologize, and recognize the history before, then we can move on.”
As of this writing, WWE has yet to acknowledge their mistake or issue any sort of correction.