DENTON, Texas -- The body of professional wrestler Mike Von Erich, which had been missing since his release from jail last weekend on drunken-driving and drug-possession charges, was found Thursday in a wooded area of a lakeside park and identified by his mother.
'We have no reason to believe at this time any foul play was involved,' Denton County Sheriff's Capt. Allen Lewis said. 'Every indication points toward suicide.'
Lewis said Doris Adkisson, mother of Mike Von Erich and wife of veteran wrestler Fritz Von Erich, identified the fully clothed body found near Lake Lewisville as that of her youngest son, whose legal name was Michael Adkisson.
'It's really tough,' said Kevin Von Erich, Mike's brother. 'We'll be fine. Our family has had tough times before, and we'll be all right.'
The 23-year-old is the third member of the Von Erich wrestling family to suffer a tragic or unexplained death. The eldest brother, David, died in Japan in 1984 from a mysterious stomach ailment at age 25. Another brother, Jack, was electrocuted in 1959 at age 6.
A fourth brother, Kerry, was injured seriously last summer when his motorcycle crashed into the rear of an Argyle police car. He has not returned to the ring since his injury.
Von Erich's body was found about 10 a.m. Thursday by a police dog searching through tall grass. The body was found in a sleeping bag about 500 to 600 yards from the wrestler's car, which was parked near the entrance of Pilot Knoll Park at Lake Lewisville, Lewis said.
Lewis said Denton County Justice of the Peace Hubert Cunningham ruled tentatively that Von Erich died from undetermined causes and ordered the body taken to the Dallas County medical examiner's office for an autopsy.
A spokesman for the medical examiner's office said the ruling on the cause of death would be released by Cunningham.
Von Erich's locked 1986 Mercury was found about 5 p.m. Wednesday at the park, northwest of Dallas and some eight miles from the wrestler's home in Roanoke, Lewis said.
The vehicle contained the wrestler's jacket and a handwritten note reading: 'Mom and dad, I have gone to a better place. I'll be watching,' Lewis said.
Von Erich had been released at 3:10 p.m. Saturday after posting $3,500 bail on charges of driving while intoxicated, possession of a controlled substance and possession of less than two ounces of marijuana, Lewis said.
Von Erich was one of four wrestling sons of retired heavyweight wrestling champion Fritz Von Erich, whose real name is Jack Adkisson.