Andre the Giant was one of the most iconic professional wrestlers of all time, standing over 7 feet tall and weighing over 500 pounds. His enormous size and strength earned him nicknames like “The 8th Wonder of the World” and catapulted him to fame both inside and outside the ring.
While Andre’s larger-than-life persona captivated audiences worldwide, his personal life remained largely a mystery. This included his relationship with Jean Christensen, a beautiful model and public relations specialist who became Andre’s wife.
Jean helped humanize the legendary wrestler, showing his gentle side away from the spotlight. Though they kept their romance private, Jean stood by her husband’s side at the height of his career. Even after Andre’s untimely death, Jean maintained her privacy, preferring to live outside the public eye.
Here we’ll explore the life of Jean Christensen, from her early days as a model to her marriage to Andre the Giant and later years out of the spotlight. We’ll uncover Jean’s background, her relationship with Andre, and the legacy they left behind.
Who is Jean Christensen?
Jean Christensen was born in the early 1950s in the United States. With her tall, slender figure, alluring looks, and charming personality, Jean pursued modeling, working with various agencies and brands in the 1970s.
Beyond modeling, Jean had a passion for sports entertainment. She got involved in public relations for wrestling promotions, handling media and communications. It was likely through her PR work that Jean first crossed paths with the wrestling sensation Andre the Giant.
Jean and Andre had instant chemistry, despite their vast differences in stature and background. While Andre traveled the world wrestling, Jean provided an anchor in his chaotic lifestyle on the road. Their shared love for the wrestling business gave them common ground.
Jean Christensen and Andre the Giant’s Relationship
Andre the Giant, born André René Roussimoff, was discovered by wrestling scouts in his late teens. By his mid-20s, he was already a major star both in international territories and Vince McMahon’s World Wrestling Federation (WWF).
During his rise to fame in the late 1970s and early 80s, Andre entered a relationship with Jean Christensen. Jean was working in public relations for the WWF, helping manage media appearances and interviews for the wrestlers.
Andre and Jean connected immediately despite the odd pairing they seemed to be on the surface. In reality, they shared much in common, including their drive and dedication to their crafts.
While Andre spent over 200 days a year on the road, he always returned to Jean’s embrace. Their contrasting statures, with Andre towering over seven feet tall and Jean’s slender five-and-a-half-foot model physique, seemed to fit together perfectly.
Andre and Jean kept their romance low-key, preferring privacy over publicity. They eventually married, though the exact date is unknown. The couple welcomed a daughter named Robin Christensen-Roussimoff in 1979.
Later Years and Legacy
Andre the Giant’s popularity expanded beyond wrestling in the 1980s with roles in films like The Princess Bride. However, his health declined, with Andre suffering from acromegaly and severe back issues.
Andre passed away in 1993 at only 46 years old, leaving Jean a widow. Jean guarded her privacy in subsequent years, moving on from her public role in wrestling to live her life away from the spotlight. Tragically, Jean also passed away in January 2008 at just 56 years old.
Though Andre and Jean’s romance was largely unknown to fans, their legacy lives on through their daughter Robin. Robin has shared memories of her parents’ loving relationship and spoken about growing up with a larger-than-life dad.
Today, Andre the Giant remains one of wrestling’s most legendary figures, his sheer size and strength enshrining him as a pop culture icon. While his wife Jean may not be as famous, she helped ground Andre and show his softer side few got to see. Their love story, though private, remains a special part of Andre’s lasting legacy.
Jean Christensen led a remarkable life, even if little is widely known about her years out of the public eye. As a model and wrestling PR specialist, Jean crossed paths with icons like Andre the Giant, whom she married.
Though Jean valued her privacy in the years following Andre’s death, her impact on his life and legacy is undeniable. She humanized the Eighth Wonder of the World, showing Andre’s more nuanced persona beyond the bombastic character that captivated crowds.
Jean’s lifetime of memories with Andre live on through their daughter Robin today. And while Jean may not have sought fame like her iconic husband, she played a special part in the personal history of one of wrestling’s true legends.