PARMA, Ohio (WOIO) - On July 3, WWE superstar ‘The Miz’ returned to his Alma-mater Normandy High School for a celebration in his honor.
Real name Mike Mizanin: The pro wrestler walked the halls of his old stomping grounds for the first time in 20 years.
Following the ceremony, we caught up with the Parma native to learn about his journey to the top.
Nearly 200 people showed up, along with the Parma Mayor, Timothy DeGeeter who gave him a key to the city.
The 38-year-old grew up in Parma and realized his dream of becoming a pro wrestler in 2004 after an appearance on the fourth season of Tough Enough.
He went by ‘The Miz’ a character he created, on the hit reality show The Real World.
The character was brash, conceited and headstrong, the perfect personality for a superstar heel.
He talked about his inspiration behind the character here:
Seven years after his professional debut he won a WWE Championship.
Mike Mizanin wanted to be a professional wrestler for as long as he could remember.
His father, George was a big wrestling fan and went to Wrestlemania V in 1989.
He brought back signatures from Macho Man Randy Savage and Hulk Hogan for his 9-year-old son.
The wide-eyed kid was star struck and determined to be like the superstars he had in his new program.
Mike didn’t find out until years later that story was a lie and his dad just forged their signatures.
As Mike would go on to admit, it was definitely good for the story.
At least that’s how it worked out for Mike: The Miz, like most-of-us was in awe of Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson in the 90s.
In the the sit-down Miz talked about getting nostalgic in the ring during Wrestlemania LVIII.
The 10 friends that he came up with and watched wrestling with as a teen were cheering from the front row when he defeated John Cena.
Thanks to the help of his idol Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson.
It’s crazy how life works.