DICKSON — Sometimes the best moments in life really are worth waiting for.
Just ask Dickson native Joe Herrell, or as he’s known nowadays “The Chickasaw Warrior Ky-ote.”
Last Saturday night during the Imperial Wrestling Revolution’s Christmas Star Wars event, the former Comets standout set foot in the same gymnasium where he received his diploma in May  2007.
It was the first time Herrell had gotten to wrestle in his hometown, in his home gymnasium.
The cherry on top, he was getting to wrestle someone he admired while he was in high school, former WWE superstar John Morrison.
“I was definitely nervous before the event,” Herrell said. “Getting to wrestle with one of my all-time favorites is very special for me. I had goosebumps. I’ve wrestled Morrison before, but there’s something about this gymnasium that made it that much more special. I might not have gotten the win tonight, but I got to have a very special match with one of my heroes.”
Just steps outside Comet Gymnasium was another place that brought back good memories for Herrell, the Dickson Comets football stadium.
A record which Herrell still owns to this day is the single-game touchdown record of seven he set during his days draped in the blue and white on the gridiron. He was also an All-State selection during his time with the Comets.
“I’ll think every other week if I just had one more season, how things might be different,” Herrell said. “To be honest I watch my highlight film at least once a month.”
Since hanging up his cleats, Herrell has made a name for himself in the squared circle as a member of the IWR promotion as part of the Arrow Club faction.
In the 11 years he’s devoted to pro wrestling, the former Comets star has collected 16 total championships throughout multiple wrestling associations, including the IWR Revolutionary Championship as well as one half of the IWR World Tag Team champions.
In addition, he’s gotten to work for World Wrestling Entertainment, Ring of Honor, and Impact Wrestling among many other promotions across the country.
He’s also had the pleasure of working with some of the biggest names in the business including John Cena of the WWE, Rhyno, Evan Bourne aka Matt Sydal, as well as Marshall and Ross Von Erich of the legendary Von Erich family.
“Growing up in a small town like Dickson is special,” Herrell said. “The thing people can take away from this experience is that they can chase their dreams. Words can’t explain how I’ve felt about this experience. To have John come up to me and tell me afterwards ‘That was awesome’ meant so much to me.”
As he walked back down the isle towards the locker room following his match, Herrell said the three words he’d waited more than a decade to say in his hometown.
“Thank you Dickson!”
“To be able to say that was bittersweet for me,” Herrell said. “I’d never gotten the chance to actually thank all the people who supported me while I played football or while I was in high school. That meant a lot to me to finally be able to thank my hometown for all they’ve given me.”