R.I.P. Chris “Big Poppa” Schnake: 1974 – 2011

August 31, 2011
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Big Poppa Schnake and Tapout

BigPoppaSchnake8UFC48It’s been a tough time of late for the mixed martial arts community, which has seen several of its family members pass away. Esteemed trainer Shawn Tompkins, and the manager of Jake Shields, his father Jack, just recently passed away.

Unfortunately, we here at MMAWeekly.com have to count another of our former colleagues among those we’ve lost. We learned on Tuesday that former MMAWeekly.com interviewer and part-time radio co-host Chris “Big Poppa” Schnake died at the age of 37.

If you didn’t know Schnake, you missed out.

To say he was one of a kind would be a massive understatement… but in a good way.

Big Poppa Schanke and Chuck LiddellThey say that Led Zeppelin singer Robert Plant had a voice that could carry an arena without a microphone. Schnake certainly couldn’t sing like Plant, but in his true calling as a fight announcer, his gruff pipes not only filled every crack and crevice of a venue, when he boomed a fighter’s name, you instantly knew who was on the mic.

Honestly, there are just too many stories (especially of nakedness and kilts), too many moments, too much life that emanated from Schnake to do him justice in a few short words. He probably captured his essence best in his own description of himself on Facebook.

Big Poppa Schnake at UFC 48“I am the luckiest man alive. I am a former Marine and a single father of 2 KICKASS sons, Xander and Louden. I am also a world-class announcer and commentator for the greatest sport in the world, the God given sport of MIXED MARTIAL ARTS.”

Details are scarce at the moment, but early reports are that he likely passed in his sleep, possibly due to a diabetes-induced coma.

Not matter how, we lost a good friend in Big Poppa Schnake, who joins another of our former colleagues, Ivan Canello, who also passed away earlier this year.

With Schnake, the best way we could think of to eulogize him was to let him do it himself. The following video captures several classic “Big Poppa Schnake” moments from his time working with us at MMAWeekly.com.

Bless you Schnake; you’ll never leave the MMAWeekly family.

Big Poppa Schnake
February 1974 – August 2011

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  • I’m going to miss this guy! So much energy and enthusiasm for the sport. RIP Big Poppa!

  • Damon and I were lucky enough to run into him at the Arnolds in March. He was MC’ing the Bobybuilding.com booth. I totally missed him until I heard his voice… you can’t miss that! … cuz he was down to around 145-150 pounds!!!

    Looked great. Couldn’t believe it.

    Didn’t get to see Schnake often of late, but still gonna miss him.

  • tattedgin

    thank you for all the support please check here and facebook for service up dates we will have two one in the north and one in Florida thank you Teresa Schnake

  • Schnake was a great guy and nobody loved MMA more than this guy, hands down. An infectious voice and personality. Heaven must have needed an announcer because they got him now. We’ll miss you my friend.

  • tattoocharlie

    scnake!!!!!!!my boy from otown….u always will be a true…….lived life loud and made it better for all of us.i will forever miss our shenanigans in orlando and your kilt(maybe not the kilt).anyways rest in peace brother stay funny and this world will not be the same without you……….with love charlie and autumn

  • twodragunns

    RIP Big Poppa, I lost my older brother (1) year older than me to the very same thing ….. he’s definitely in a better place just like my bro and we’ll see ya on the other side of life.