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UFC Fighter Missing :Update: found dead
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Unhappy UFC Fighter Missing :Update: found dead - September 8, 2008, 11:55 PM

Posted Sep 8th 2008 8:47PM by TMZ Staff

TMZ has learned former UFC middleweight champion Evan Tanner is missing in the California desert. And we're told a body has been found in the area where rescue workers were searching.

Law enforcement tells us the 37-year-old went out into the desert near San Diego last Friday. That same day, Tanner sent a text message to a friend that he was out of water and needed help. There was a massive search that ended abruptly yesterday.

As for the body that was discovered, cops have not yet identified the remains.

Tanner blogged last month he was going to the desert because of his friends talking about "treasure hunting and lost gold, and my own insatiable appetite for adventure and exploration." Tanner continued, "I plan on going so deep into the desert, that any failure of my equipment could cost me my life."

Tanner was featured on Spike TV's, "The Ultimate Fighter." He lost his last bout in June at the Ultimate Fighter 7 finale.

UPDATE: The body has been identified -- Evan Tanner is dead at 37. According to UFC.com, the cause of death is still undetermined.


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September 8, 2008, 11:57 PM

Oops!


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September 9, 2008, 04:09 AM

"I plan on going so deep into the desert, that any failure of my equipment could cost me my life."

Seems like he had some idea of what he was getting himself into. Thing is, they found his body pretty quickly so he must not have gone that deep. I wonder if there was fowl play. Hmmmm... did he belong to the Church of Scientology?


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September 9, 2008, 06:59 AM

If my memory serves me correctly; was he not lost at sea durring some part of his recent life?


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September 9, 2008, 07:07 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by OrangeShirtDude
"I plan on going so deep into the desert, that any failure of my equipment could cost me my life."

Seems like he had some idea of what he was getting himself into. Thing is, they found his body pretty quickly so he must not have gone that deep. I wonder if there was fowl play. Hmmmm... did he belong to the Church of Scientology?
Fowl play? You mean birds killed him? I wonder what he ever did to the birdies out there...


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September 9, 2008, 07:29 AM



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September 9, 2008, 07:47 AM



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September 9, 2008, 08:34 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Diggy
Fowl play? You mean birds killed him? I wonder what he ever did to the birdies out there...
oops.


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September 9, 2008, 09:33 AM



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September 9, 2008, 11:59 AM

NOOOOOOOO!!! Damn. RIP fellow Texan and motorcyclist.

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September 9, 2008, 12:03 PM

A sad day...

I really liked him, he was one of the old school guys...fighting several fights a night.

Not the best fighter but he had alot of heart.
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September 9, 2008, 12:09 PM

Former UFC champ Tanner dies

By MMAWeekly.com
Former Ultimate Fighting Championship middleweight titleholder Evan Tanner was found dead in the mountain area near Palo Verde, Calif. on Monday. He was 37 years old. His management team at the Driving Force Sports management agency confirmed his death to MMAWeekly.com.
Tanner had trekked into the desert on a journey to "cleanse" himself, according to Douglas Vincitorio of Tanner's management team. "He went out to the desert to do a 'cleansing' as he called it. Kind of like 'Survivor Man.'" These short trips were not new to Tanner, said Vincitorio. It is something that he has done numerous times over the years.
"What we were told is that (sheriff's officials who found him) believe his motorcycle had run out of gas, so he went to walk out in like 115 to 118-degree heat," said Vincitorio. "He was miles away from his camp. That's where the helicopter found him. Right now, they just think that he succumbed to the heat."
Lt. George Moreno of the Imperial County Sheriff's Department has reported that Tanner set out treasure hunting on Wednesday, Sept. 3, asking friends to call for help if he didn't return right away. Lt. Moreno says friends called the Sheriff's Office on Friday, Sept. 5, and search and rescue teams looked for him throughout the weekend in temperatures up to 114 degrees.
The U.S. Marines used a helicopter to search by air Monday morning, finally spotting a body two miles from the campground where Tanner's belongings were found earlier, according to Lt. Moreno. While a coroner has yet to confirm the body is Tanner's, John Hayner, the owner at Driving Force Sports, says people close to to the fighter visually identified his body at the scene.
On Aug. 10, Tanner wrote a blog on Spike TV's website, proclaiming his desire to start an adventure in the desert east of his new home in Oceanside, Calif. An avid outdoorsman and wandering spirit, he wanted to escape civilization for a while.
"I'm not just going out into the desert, I'm going out into the desert to hunt for lost treasure," he wrote. "I'm going on a pilgrimage of sorts, a journey to solitude, to do some thinking, and to pay my respects to the great mysteries."
On Aug. 16, Tanner wrote about collecting supplies for his journey, and wrote about the dangers he might face.
"I plan on going so deep into the desert, that any failure of my equipment, could cost me my life," he said. "I've been doing a great deal of research and study. I want to know all I can about where I'm going, and I want to make sure I have the best equipment."
Of course, this led followers of his blog to fear for his safety, as they often did when Tanner reported his frequent by-the-seat-of-his-pants adventures. In a blog dated Aug. 27, Tanner tried to calm his audience.
"This isn't a version of 'Into the Wild,'" he wrote. "I'm not going out into the desert with a pair of shorts and a bowie knife, to try to live off the land. I'm going fully geared up, and I'm planning on having some fun."
But he also affirmed that things could go wrong if his equipment wasn't up to snuff.
"I do plan on going back pretty far, so I did mention in one of my posts that I wanted to make sure to have good quality gear," he said. "Any failure of gear out in the desert could cause a problem."
On Sept. 2, Tanner wrote his final blog entry, documenting a training session at a facility in Oceanside.
The Amarillo, Texas native was a high school wrestling stand out who won the state championships his junior and senior years despite only getting into the sport as a sophomore. He entered mixed martial arts in 1997 encouraged by friends.
Tanner rose to the top of the mixed martial arts world by winning the UFC middleweight title over David Terrell at UFC 51: Super Saturday Feb. 5, 2005. Tanner last competed in the UFC on June 21 losing to Kendall Grove by split decision.
"He will obviously be sorely missed," said Vincitorio. Adding, "I think that Evan would want to be remembered as a very complex man with many layers, not just a fighter."
Tanner was surely a unique personality. He's eclectic spirit and competitive nature will be sorely missed in the MMA community.


http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/200...9/tanner.obit/

First vehicle was "an old 1980 Yamaha Maxim with a big Windjammer fairing of the front.." Last vehicle was a Harley. Favorite vacation spot was "riding the motorcycle across country, watching the scenery roll by.”


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