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UFC Fighter Found Dead

9/9/2008 12:20 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

TMZ has learned former UFC middleweight champion Evan Tanner went missing in the California desert and his body was found yesterday.

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.

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's song of choice on his MySpace page was "Guaranteed" by Eddie Vedder from the movie "Into the Wild." The movie was about a guy who goes off into the wilderness against the advice of everyone he knows. Guess how it ended.

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

Cause of death is undetermined.

107 COMMENTS

No Avatar
76.

jesus    

you idiots need to get the facts. only a fool assumes. wait until the investigation is done before you jump to conclusions.

2199 days ago
77.

Happyface1234    

I am surprised at all of the horrible comments on here. A man just died and you people are making fun of him. He has a family that is in a state of shock about his death. Please have some respect for his family.

2199 days ago
78.

FlBiker    

Evan Tanner after his desert excursion..... Even Tanner.

2199 days ago
79.

buffer magee    

from all Evans fans we send love to his family R.I.P your a legend and we wont forget what you have done for the sport of MMA

2199 days ago
80.

matt    

For all you people who think this was suicide, you're a bunch of idiots. The details are that his bike was at his camp out of gas. He then tried walking back to get help. The helicopter spotted his footprints before they found him. Why would he try walking back if he wanted to die? Why would he message his friend and tell him he's out of water and needs help? Exact words.....

Why would he even bother setting up camp? Why would he even buy a motorcyle? He could just start walking out in to the desert???? User your heads and stop diminishing this man without knowing any facts. Read his blogs and he should be an inspiration to all of us.

2199 days ago
81.

LIFE IS LIFE    

I'm a walking suicide but you'd never know cause' I hide I got too much pride to show my depression I think about dying everyday but never say anything cause' people will stop me rob me from succeeding in my goal.
I fold my letter up saying how sorry I am for being a disappointment to my family and you'll be better without me.
You'd never think little baby girl would try something so bold didn't know that the mold you made her in turned it's grin and that hell really existed in her eyes and she cries for god to please just let me die and be free from the reality she's facing!! I'm a walking suicide

2199 days ago
82.

JEN2K    

EVAN WAS A GLADIATOR IN THE RING AND A TRUE AND GENTLE MAN OUTSIDE THE RING. HE LOVED THE EARTH AND NATURE WITH ALL HIS HEART.

EVAN WILL BE MISSED BY HUNDREDS OF CLOSE FRIENDS AS WELL AS MILLIONS OF FANS WHO LOVED TO SEE HIM LEAVE EVERYTHING IN THE RING WITH NO REGRETS. SAY A PRAYER FOR EVAN THEN LOOK AT YOURSELF IN THE MIRROR.

2199 days ago
83.

kimmie    

what a shame...i had the opportunity to meet evan in vegas this past year and he was such a nice person and seemed to have his act together...i send my best to his family, fans and friends....you will be missed evan.....love form tennessee

2199 days ago
84.

PolarBear    

Something is wrong with the situation. How could be run out of water on his first day? That's unrealistic right there.

2199 days ago
85.

JEN2K    

Youtube: THE GREAT GIG IN THE SKY RACHEL

it's my ode to Evan

The Great Gig in the Sky
(Wright) 4:44

"And I am not frightened of dying, any time will do, I
don't mind. Why should I be frightened of dying?
There's no reason for it, you've gotta go sometime."

"If you can hear this whispering you are dying."

"I never said I was frightened of dying."

2199 days ago
86.

FlBiker    

#80 suicide

Go with your feelings!

2199 days ago
87.

yellowroseoftx03    

RIP Evan. We alwasy had to go for the home town boy. You were one of my favorite fighters. I am sure all of you fellow Texas Panhandle-ites will miss you dearly!

2199 days ago
88.

FlBiker    

Diary Day 1: Ran out of gas and water
Diary Day2:

2199 days ago
89.

MIck    

See kids, steroids screw with your head and make you do stupid-ass things like this.

2199 days ago
90.

El Ganzo    

R.I.P. Evan Michael Tanner. To those who do not know or have not heard of Tanner he was a great fighter and and even greater person. Tanner was an avid and experienced nature enthusiast and had been on many solo adventures. to those that followed his blog know that he was fully equipped for this trip and had the best gear available. It was just his time and he would not have probably had it any other way. Evan, may your spirit wander the heavens just as it did on earth. R.I.P. my friend.

2199 days ago
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