How Hana Kimura found fame and thousands of fans

Hana Kimura had a ‘bright future ahead of her’. (Picture: Etsuo Hara/Getty Images)

Japanese star Hana Kimura has died aged 22, prompting an outpouring of love and tributes from her legions of fans.

The young star, whose mother is former professional wrestler Kyoko Kimura, had a big following online and thanks to her profession had also established a loyal fan base despite her young age.

Here we look back at how Hana found fame at such a young age and how her peers and fans are remembering her following the sad news of her death.

How Hana Kimura found fame and an adoring fan base at only 22

Hana Kimura was born on September 3, 1997 in Yokohama, Japan and made a name for herself as a professional wrestler like her mother.

Within months of making her debut on March 30, 2016 for Wrestle-1, Hana had captured her first title – the JWP Junior Championship – and went on to claim other championship titles whilst also appearing in Stardom – a Japanese Joshi Puroresu or women’s professional wrestling league.

The accomplished young star went on to secure a number of championships and titles before she officially joined Stardom on March 25, 2019.

During her time with Stardom Hana twice won the Artist of Stardom championship and also claimed the title Goddess of Stardom championship.

Hana Kimura claimed many titles and championships during her short career. (Picture: Etsuo Hara/Getty Images)

Hana’s public profile grew when she joined Japanese reality television series Terrace House for its fifth season in September 2019.

The show, which follows six strangers who move in together into a house in Tokyo, was originally just released in Japan, but became a global sleeper hit and developed a cult following after it was picked up by Netflix in 2015.

Hana’s international fame was propelled further by her appearance on the show and her assertive attitude and signature pink hair were a hit with viewers.

Her popularity is evident by the thousands of fans who have taken to social media to express their sadness at the news of her death today.

#RIPHanaKimura quickly began trending worldwide on Twitter and the star’s peers from the wrestling world have also taken to social media to pay tribute to the star.

‘My first day at stardom, she was the most welcoming cause she had the best English out of the entire locker room, she loved taking to the gaijin’s to improve her English. I looked forward to seeing her every show,’ wrote fellow wrestler Session Moth Martina.

Legit, my first day at stardom, she was the most welcoming cause she had the best English out of the entire locker room, she loved taking to the gaijin’s to improve her English. I looked forward to seeing her every show. I’m truly heartbroken right now #RIPHana pic.twitter.com/J0zFfNDR2X

— Session Moth Martina🍻 マーティナセッション (@mothfromdaflats) May 23, 2020

While wrestling champion Tessa Blanchard wrote: ‘She was an amazing girl with the kindest soul and immense passion and work ethic’ ,and Australian WWE Superstar Tenille Dashwood described Hana as ‘a beautiful, talented young woman with a bright future ahead of her.’

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