WWE superstar John Cena shocked the world last year when it was revealed that he had secretly married his girlfriend Shay Shariatzadeh in a private ceremony in Tampa, Florida. Learn more about the Canadian beauty who stole the heart of one of wrestling’s most legendary stars.
John Cena and Shay Shariatzadeh
Now a household name, John Cena is widely regarded as one of the greatest professional wrestlers of all time. In WWE, he has earned a whopping 17 world championships. On top of his lengthy wrestling resume, Cena has now created a formidable career in acting, bodybuilding, television presenting, and even rapping. He’s now a bonafide film star, appearing in big movies like Suicide Squad and Bumblebee. His Suicide Squad character Peacemaker was such a hit, he’s getting his own HBO Max series.
A far cry from her husband’s lengthy career in the limelight, Shay studied Electrical and Electronics Engineering at the University of British Columbia, where she received a bachelor’s degree in 2013 per LinkedIn. “I have always enjoyed math and physics,” she continued on Avigilon’s site. “My brother studied engineering in school, and I remember one day he came home with a project and it was an autonomous car — and that was it! I decided to study Engineering.”
Shay was a product manager at Avigilon, a Motorola Solutions Company in Vancouver, Canada. “I interviewed multiple Product Managers to figure out how they got into their role, and I followed their path,” she said in a profile on Avigilon‘s website. “Today, I take pride working in the video surveillance industry because our products help keep people and their assets safe, and that’s my little contribution to our world.”
Notably, Shay has stayed connected to her alma mater where she continues to work as a mentor. Part of her dutiess include developing and maintaining “connections to UBC and contribute to efforts to build a stronger industry and community,” and contributing “to the future of engineering and technology by assisting the next generation of leaders,” according to her LinkedIn.
How did John and Shay meet?
John Cena and Shay Shariatzadeh were together for a year and a half before tying the knot. He first saw Shay while filming at a Vancouver restaurant where she was dining with a group of female friends and had a love-at-first-sight moment. “There was one woman I was looking at and I couldn’t take my eyes off her… that’s when it started,” John said in an interview to Entertainment Tonight.
The couple began dating in early 2019, and were first spotted having a romantic dinner date in her native Vancouver in March 2019, while John was in Canada to film Playing with Fire.
The pair seemed to have plenty to talk about, as their first outings as a couple were long ones. Four hour dinners typically mean amazing conversation, and that clearly helped connect the wrestler/actor with the beautiful engineer.
His next project took him to San Diego, where she flew in to meet him while enjoying a long-distance relationship. John was such a gentleman, as he was photographed personally taking her back to the airport after the long weekends together and passionately kissing her goodbye. Shay eventually got a tech job working remotely so that the pair were able to be together all the time, and that companionship is now going to last a lifetime. We’ve got five things to know about Shay:
They finally made their red carpet debut on Oct. 26, 2019 at the NYC premiere of his film Playing With Fire, where they were both glowing as they smiled for cameras.
John Cena’s Past Relationships
Shay worked in Vancouver, CA in an engineering position, far away from the limelight that was John’s previous romance with longtime GF and later fiance, Nikki Bella, 36. It seems that Cena opted for a more low-key romance this time around after the highly public nature of his relationship with fellow WWE star Bella, which ended in 2018. The two were in a high profile relationship that began in 2012. John proposed to Nikki in April 2017, however, they never made it down the aisle — splitting in 2018.
Before Nikki, John had a few other high profile relationships with those in the wrestling community, including Mickie James — who he dated in 2007 — and Lisa Marie Varon for about a month. At the time, Lisa was on a break from husband Lee Varon, who she was married to from 1994 until 2015. “One of those times that we separated, I dated John for about a month. It was not in 2006 or 2007. It was 2002. I was married but separated. John was single,” she explained.
John was also previously married to Elizabeth Huberdeau. The former couple got engaged in 2009, and married that same summer. John and Elizabeth were notoriously private about their relationship, an were rarely seen together over their three year marriage. The exes divorced in 2012.
Shay’s Top Moments with Her Husband
John and Shay have kept their relationship fairly low profile, but the beauty has supported her husband at a red carpet event or two! The pair looked so glam when they stepped out for their first red carpet appearance ever at the NYC premiere of Playing With Fire back in Oct. 2019. Shay dazzled in a silver sequin skirt and a black top.
Just weeks later, the two were out for another premiere — this time for his flick Dolittle. Shay was a red carpet pro by then, slaying her look with a stunning silver dress and stylish side braid. She proudly posed alongside John, who was beaming the entire time.
While the COVID-19 pandemic put a stop to in-person premieres for some time, John and Shay were back at it by Aug. 2021 for The Suicide Squad in Aug. 2021. The couple happily smiled and posed for cameras, even sharing a kiss for the crowd!
Thoughts of expanding their family seem to be on horizon for the couple. The Fast & Furious 9 star opened up about possibly having kids in a new interview. “I’m a little bit older, a bit wiser. I’m realizing there is life and life exists and it’s beautiful — and I think part of that is being a parent, so we’ll see,” he confessed in an interview with British outlet The Sun. This comes as quite a surprise due to his strong stance against having children with his ex-fiancée Nikki Bella, which ultimately contributed to the demise of their relationship.
Shay hasn’t publicly commented about whether or not she wants kids, but she does have a particularly close relationship with her mom who has been a big source of inspiration. “The strongest and most hard working woman I know is my mother. The biggest lesson she taught me was to be independent and fight for the things I want in life,” Shay added in a past interview on her former employer’s website. “She is the reason I fight to be the best version of myself, to be kind and to never give up—because, despite all the hardship, she always smiled. She is my hero.”