Sometimes love is a doggone battlefield. Just ask Sharmell Sullivan and Booker Huffman, TNA Wrestling’s king and queen and stars of its show “Power Couple,” who found love in the ring. On paper their love story reads like a hit-or-miss: former beauty pageant queen, Black American Princess , Spellman grad and math and biomedical whiz meets reformed convict who chose the streets as his surrogate family after losing both his parents at the age of 14. Still, love saw to it that their paths would eventually cross. Although there were no fireworks at first, Sullivan and Huffman’s chemistry simmered for nearly two years before he finally mustered the nerve to ask her out.
“The funny thing is, I remember telling my mom, ‘There’s this guy at work and I don’t think he likes me very much,'” says Sullivan, a former WCW Nitro Girl dancer-turned-pro-wrestler. “Don’t get me wrong, he was always respectful, but he never shared more than a hello, goodbye and a brief handshake. He would barely speak to me, if I tried to have a conversation with him, he would cut it short.”
As fate would have it, the couple worked together for a month and half at the Los Angeles wrestling competition “Ready to Rumble.” That forced them to become better acquainted. Still, it wasn’t until the Gary, Indiana, native returned home to Atlanta that she realized she missed him. “So we began a long-distance courtship over the phone.”
And those feelings were mutual for Huffman: “I kept thinking I spent a lot of time with this woman and now she’s gone. I thought, Hey, well, you never know where this might lead,” says Huffman nonchalantly. “We finally told each other how we felt and our chemistry just grew.” Before long Sullivan packed her bags and moved to Houston to be with her man.
In November 2004, three years after the beginning of their courtship, Huffman popped the big question—well sort of. “I was washing dishes and he said, ‘Let’s get married.’ He’s a very practical person so it wasn’t your traditional proposal.”
Three months later, Sullivan married Huffman before 200 family and friends at St. Timothy Community Church in Sullivan’s hometown of Gary, Indiana, with five bridesmaids and groomsmen. Unlike their work in the ring, the pro-wrestlers assure that their love and marriage has never been about the fanfare but about building a solid foundation. “I love that Sharmell’s like me—down to earth and regular,” says Booker T. But Sullivan shares the true secret to their longevity: “I fell in love with him because he’s a wonderful, kind person,” says Sharmell. “It was a slow process but it’s the reason why our marriage is going to stand the test of time.”
Check out Booker T and Sharmell on TNA Westling on Spike TV.
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