WWE Superstars Big Show and David Otunga, along with Executive Vice President of Creative Stephanie McMahon, rallied a group of 850 students at the Luis Munoz Marin School in Bridgeport, Conn., on Thursday as part of the Be a STAR Alliance’s campaign to end bullying. (PHOTOS | WATCH BIG SHOW'S SPEECH)
The WWE trio were welcomed to the school by Bridgeport Mayor Bill Finch and State Representative Andres Ayala Jr., who presented McMahon with a citation for the Be a STAR Alliance’s work in fighting against bullying.
“Kids define themselves. Other people’s hurtful words don't define them,” McMahon said.
She then encouraged the students to help stop bullying and learn to show tolerance and respect for each other.
Big Show, who stands in at seven feet tall, talked about how his size made him a target for bullies. At the age of 12, The World’s Largest Athlete was six feet, two inches tall and weighed 220 pounds. “Other kids called me names and threw rocks at me,” Big Show said.
He continued by telling the children something that helped him get through the bullying. “If you're bullied there's nothing wrong with you. It's not your fault,” the former World Heavyweight Champion said.
Otunga, who is also a Harvard-educated lawyer, shared experiences of when he was bullied as a child growing up in Chicago because he wore glasses. “They didn't know they were bullying me. They thought they were being funny,” he explained to the kids.
For Otunga, the bullying ended when his tormentors found out the effect their words had.
“Once the bullies were told they were hurting my feelings, the bullying stopped,” the former WWE Tag Team Champion said.
Big Show closed out the rally by leading the children in a chant to re-enforce the message of the assembly. “Don’t be a bully,” the Superstar bellowed.
“Be a STAR!,” the kids yelled back.
The fifth through eighth grade students are part of the “Lighthouses in the Community” program, which provides the city’s youth with a safe and supportive environment after school and in the summer.
The be a STAR Alliance is a partnership between WWE and more than 50 organizations, including The Creative Coalition, GLAAD and the Girl Scouts of America. For more information, go to www.beastaralliance.org. You can also follow the alliance on Twitter and Facebook