SAN ANTONIO — She’s a force to be reckoned with—and for pro-wrestler Thunder Rosa, the storm has just started.
The San Antonio based superstar just clenched a historic win last month, earning the title for the All Elite World Wrestling Women’s World Champion.
But it’s not just the gold belt that makes her shine, it’s how she’s using her skills in the ring to help the Salvation Army San Antonio.
Melissa Cervantes-Robles, better knowns as Thunder Rosa, was born in Tijuana and moved to California when she was 17-years-old.
“Then I moved to Texas, and now I call Texas home. It felt like home the first time that I was here,” said Thunder Rosa.
With hard work, grit, and determination, Thunder Rosa quickly rose up the pro-wrestling circuit, and last month clenched the AEW Women’s World Champion title.
Thunder Rosa said she faced many challenges along the way.
“People taking you, you serious, because when they see wrestling, they always say that wrestling is fake, ‘Oh, well, that's not that's not a real sport,’” said Thunder Rosa. “I can tell you it took me like 10,000 hours, not to perfect my craft, but to be really good at what I do.”
“And just the fact that I'm also older. I started when I was twenty-eight. I don't look like your typical young female wrestler. It was very difficult to squeeze in and get opportunities,” she added. “But for me, when there was a no on the table, there was a yes. I always tell people that you have to see a positive on the negative and see the solutions instead of just complaining about the problem.”
Thunder Rosa said she always wanted to make a difference, and she set out to do that, not only by becoming a champion in the ring, but giving back to her community.
She owns Mission Pro-Wrestling, an all-female show, that will be rolling into San Antonio on April 16 to help raise money for the San Antonio Salvation Army.
The show, “Living on the Edge” is to help with after-school programs on San Antonio’s Southside.
“That's one of the parts of the city that needs the most help because of the socioeconomics that exist there,” said Thunder Rosa. “After school programs are so key for a lot of these kids because this is like a safe haven for them.”
Thunder Rosa is bringing along a group of girls to watch the show, and said she didn’t realize at the time the connection to the show’s theme, Living on the Edge.
“But I mean, living in in in parts of the city like that, you sometimes feel like you're living on the edge. You never know if you're going to get in trouble or be in the wrong place at the wrong time can get you into things that you never thought that you will get in,” said Thunder Rosa. “But that's the reality for a lot of people. They live on the edge every single day.”
Aside from her persona in the ring, Thunder Rosa wants her fans to know she’s a genuine person through and through.
“I'm a hustler. I am a person that doesn’t take no as an answer. And also, I am a visionary and I am a very, very, very giving person and I will give my sweater for somebody that is struggling, no questions asked,” said Thunder Rosa. “I think some people might think that when I try to help somebody it’s because I want something back, I really don't want anything back. I just want I want to make a difference.”
And, that’s her mission, especially as a role model for younger girls.
“When people see me as a role model it’s like if I can show people she's doing it because she wants to help and encourage them to help somebody that is in need, that, to me, means everything more than the money, more than the fame and more than anything else I can have,” said Thunder Rosa.
The event on April 16 kicks off at 6 p.m. at 3802 SW Military Drive.
For ticket information go to missionprowrestling.net