You would think that after years of hearing absurdly powerful jokes ascribed to him, Chuck Norris would be sick of them. But on the contrary, he’s super cool about it and has learned to use the funny memes to his advantage. By mocking his self-seriousness, Norris has become a man people can relate to and admire. Well, maybe not RELATE to, because, I mean, he’s Chuck Norris, for Pete’s sake. How can one relate to such an unbeatable force?
For those who don’t know the origin of the “Chuck Norris Facts,” let us take you on a trip down the internet’s memory lane. Thanks to some ingenious forum members, a brief segment on Conan O’Brien’s show, and one ridiculous, action-packed series, the satirical facts were born.
Here’s a look at the myth, the legend, and the man who is Chuck Norris.
Thank You, Conan O’Brien, Thank You
It all started one spring evening in May 2004. Conan O’Brien was given a free hand to use whatever footage he wanted from a variety of Universal productions. So, he chose to crack jokes at the expense of one of the most ridiculously heroic and over-the-top shows to grace our screens – Walker, Texas Ranger.
The show starred Chuck Norris as Cordell Walker, a former marine, decorated vet, martial arts expert and Texas ranger who devotes his life to enforcing the law and kicking the butts of whoever is involved in fishy business. In other words, a hero. But CBS took the show one step too far with their storyline and made it seem like Norris was a man who was so powerful he could drown a fish. Or make onions cry.
O’Brien caught on to that and created a segment called “Walker Texas Ranger Lever” in which every time he would pull a lever, a comically exaggerated scene from the show would appear.
Vin Diesel Played Russian Roulette With a Fully Loaded Gun and Won
O’Brien’s segment made Norris the perfect target for sarcastic, over-the-top, impossible punchlines. But interestingly, it was Vin Diesel’s role in the laughable film The Pacifier that really kicked off the Norris meme era.
After watching The Pacifier, a forum member named ScootsMagoo from the site Something Awful opened a thread titled “Post Your Vin Diesel Facts,” with the intent of cracking jokes at the actor for being glorified as some unbeatable tough guy.
People wrote comments like:
“Vin Diesel coded the Google search engine in his sleep.”
“When the Boogeyman goes to sleep every night, he checks his closet for Vin Diesel.”
You get the drill…
Chuck Norris Doesn’t Breathe. He Holds Air Hostage
ScootsMagoo’s thread inspired people to write random facts about other people, including another macho-man celebrity – Chuck Norris. A young student named Ian Spector was the mastermind behind the Norris thread. He posted a poll to decide which celeb should be the next Vin Diesel, and Norris came out on top by a landslide.
Thus, the Norris meme craze came to life. A website called ChuckNorrisfacts.com was opened, and today, it has about 12,000 different funny facts listed. The memes have spread like wildfire across the internet and have crossed over to hundreds of other forums and media outlets.
Chuck Norris Can Do a Wheelie on a Unicycle
So, how did the iconic ranger react when he saw his name attached to thousands of random facts? At first, he was confused. But then he laughed. And one could even say he was a bit flattered. His favorite line is, “They once tried to carve Chuck Norris’ face into Mount Rushmore, but the granite wasn’t hard enough for his beard.”
Norris’ lawyer, Michael Forshey, spoke on behalf of the actor and shared that, “Other than the fact that he would prefer not to see some of these ‘facts’ that are a little rough or raunchy, he’s very good-natured about it.”
We’re glad to see Norris never took the jokes to heart. I mean, there’s no way he’ll ever have a heart attack anyway. His heart isn’t foolish enough to attack him.
Chuck Norris Built the Hospital He Was Born In
For a guy who describes his early self as “a shy kid who never excelled at anything in school,” Norris has certainly come a long way. He arrived on this planet in May 1940 as Carlos Ray Norris and was raised by a troubled dad who drank a lot and a driven mom who did her best to support him and his two brothers, Weiland and Aaron.
The family was poor. And Chuck stepped in from an early age to help around the house. At school, he was an introverted little guy who couldn’t stand in front of a class and never dared raise his hand. Just being called on by his teacher to answer a question would make him shrivel up in his chair and blush.
Chuck Norris Counted to Infinity… Twice
Shortly after graduating, Norris decided to join the U.S. air force. His fellow soldiers called him “Chuck,” and the catchy name naturally stuck. Chuck was sent to an airbase in South Korea, where he discovered martial arts and fell in love with the art.
He started taking Tang Soo Do lessons and was remarkably good at it. Later, when they transferred him back to the U.S., he continued practicing at an air force based in California. The American airmen around him were puzzled by his practice, so he decided to give them a proper demonstration. He prepared a speech, something he never imagined he would do, and managed to beat his old schoolboy insecurities.
Chuck Norris Does Not Sleep. He Waits
After leaving the air force, Chuck opened karate schools and began teaching classes to kids and adults alike. He also started competing, collecting numerous awards and a lot of praise along the way. This tough cookie is a six-time undefeated World Pro Middle Weight Karate Champion.
He’s also the first man from the West to earn an 8th-degree black belt in Tae Kwon Do. Chuck’s love affair with martial arts led him to meet one of the greatest fighters the world has ever known – Bruce Lee. Naturally, they became great friends and started practicing together.
Chuck Norris Is the Reason Waldo Is Hiding
Bruce Lee had his eyes set on making it big, not only in the world of martial arts but in Hollywood as well. His movie Way of the Dragon was a cinematic wonder that brought the swift art to the masses. And he wanted Chuck Norris to be a part of it.
He asked Norris if he could fight against him in one of the scenes. Norris agreed. And so, Chuck the actor was born. The legendary showdown in Lee’s film is one for the ages. The ten-minute battle is considered to be one of the best-choreographed duals in the history of martial arts films. In case you haven’t seen the film – spoiler alert – Lee won.
Chuck Norris Kicked the World Once. It Hasn’t Stopped Spinning
The popularity of Chuck and Bruce’s fighting scene and the reputation of both as masters of the art led fans to wonder whether they had ever fought each other in real life. And if so, who won? The answer to that is no. They were never involved in an actual match, but Norris has revealed in the past that it wasn’t always fun and games during their training.
They had some disputes here and there over fighting techniques. But for the most part, Bruce had such a flexible mind that he was willing to absorb and learn from almost anyone. By training together, they opened each other up to a world of better moves and smarter strategies.
Chuck Norris’ Tears Cure Cancer. (Too Bad He Has Never Cried)
The reason Chuck Norris has never cried is because his mindset is so unbelievably centered. When asked about his key to success, he answered: “A lot of times people look at the negative side of what they feel they can’t do. I always look on the positive side of what I can do.”
According to Chuck, there’s no way someone will make it if they’re not able to stick to it when things get tough. He says you need a whole lot of faith and positivity and an understanding that obstacles will always be there. But if you’re able to overcome them – you win.
Have we heard these obvious words before? Yes. But is it good to be reminded of them? Yes!
Chuck Norris Can Beat the Sun in a Staring Contest
After Bruce Lee died in 1973, Chuck Norris was left in a state of shock (as was the rest of the world). How could a healthy, fit, 32-year-old martial artist die because of some prescription drugs?
But instead of wallowing in sadness, Norris picked himself up and pushed forward.
He said to himself, “You know, since Bruce has sadly died, there’s a gap there for a good, strong, positive heroic image on the screen.” He felt that Bruce had left a hole that was begging to be filled by someone else, someone similar who could be a positive influence on screen, as Bruce was.
Chuck Norris Can Speak Braille
Something people don’t know about Norris’ family is that is his younger brother, Wieland, served in the Vietnam war and was killed in action. Chuck holds all the respect for the U.S. military and has dedicated his Missing in Action franchise to his brother.
In 2007, Norris was made an honorary U.S. Marine as a way to commend him for his many years of support for the nation’s troops, especially for his unconditional help and care for wounded soldiers. Losing his brother in the war opened his eyes, his heart, and his will to live.
Chuck Norris Once Punched a Man in the Soul
Chuck Norris truly is a man with remarkable strength. And it’s not some woo-woo over-the-top strength we’re talking about. Chuck’s biggest strength is his heart (cue the awww). He genuinely doesn’t see another point to life besides being a positive influence and sticking up for the weak.
Among his philanthropic work is his contribution to the Make-A-Wish Foundation, which helps kids with critical illnesses. His contribution to the Vijay Amritaj Foundation, which aims at healing victims of disease across India. And lastly, he established his own foundation called Kickstart Kids – an organization providing martial arts lessons at no cost.
Chuck Norris Knows Victoria’s Secret
Norris has tied the knot twice in his life. The first time was in 1958 to his high school sweetheart, Dianne Kay Holecheck. Chuck was 18. Dianne was 17. Young and in love, they gave birth to their first child, a baby boy named Mike. Mike would soon have a brother named Eric, but before that, Norris had a daughter name Dina from – gasp – an extramarital affair.
Miraculously, the affair didn’t tear them apart. Chuck and Dianne remained together for 30 years until finally calling it quits in 1989. Nearly a decade later, he married model Gena O’Kelley (23 years his junior). They welcomed twins in 2001.
Chuck Norris Can Sneeze With His Eyes Open
Chuck’s relationship with his daughter Dina is a complicated one. She’s his love child from an affair he had with a woman named Johanna, so, understandably, their starting point as father-daughter wasn’t too ideal.
For years, Johanna kept Dina’s identity a secret from her. And it was only at the age of 16 that she discovered Chuck Norris was her dad. She wrote him a letter revealing the truth about their relationship. Chuck agreed to meet her immediately and said, “I didn’t need any blood or DNA tests. I went straight to her, hugged her, and we both started crying. It felt like as if I had known her all my life.”
Chuck Norris Can Divide by Zero
Despite meeting each other later on in life, Dina and her dad are happily reunited today and are making the most to salvage the lost time they spent apart. They go on vacations together – Dina, her three kids, and Chuck’s other kids (meaning her half-siblings).
Everyone in the Norris household seems to get along with each other. How can they not when they have such a chill, wise dad and grandpa like Chuck? He’s definitely the glue that sticks them all together. We’re happy to see his kids are on good terms despite coming from different moms.
Chuck Norris Doesn’t Need to Shave. His Beard Is Scared to Grow
In the past couple of years, Chuck’s wife, Gena O’Kelley, has been battling some troubling medical issues. It started in 2013 when she felt that there was something weird going on with her body. She felt a pain in her nerves and was advised to do some MRI tests, which concluded that she had rheumatoid arthritis.
Doctors injected her with a chemical element called gadolinium, which helps scans come out with clearer results. But the injections triggered a burning sensation all over her body. Chuck believes that the injection triggered a sickness she didn’t have before.
The Flu Gets a Chuck Norris Shot Every Year
In pursuit of her health, Chuck has given up his career to concentrate on her. “My whole life is about keeping her alive,” he said back in 2017. Gena spent around half a year in bed, with Chuck by her side. She had problems breathing and joint pain like she had never experienced before.
Thankfully, she’s doing a whole lot better today. But Chuck is still furious about the whole ordeal (and with good reason!). He filed a lawsuit against several pharmaceutical companies for $10 million. He demanded compensation for both their financial loss and Gena’s unbearable physical pain.
Chuck Norris Can Start a Fire With an Ice Cube
Chuck Norris is a man of action, beliefs, and words. He’s the whole package, basically. He’s written a couple of books, some of which have become bestsellers. His autobiography, The Secret of Inner Strength was published in 1988 and has helped people from all areas of life overcome their mental drawbacks.
Another book of his, The Secret Power Within: Zen Solutions to Real Problems, was published in 1996 and discusses the ancient system of Zen Buddhism, the philosophy behind martial arts, and what helped him cultivate mental tranquility over the years.
Chuck Norris Tells Simon What to Do
A few years after fighting Bruce Lee in The Way of the Dragon, Norris landed his first big role in the action movie Breaker! Breaker! (1977). Truth be told, the film was a bit of a flop. But it was Chuck’s first taste of actual acting, and it made him hungry for more.
He went on to kick butt in Good Guys Wear Black (1978) and battle evil forces in 1982’s Forced Vengeance. In 1984, Chuck starred in a movie that hit close to home – Missing in Action. He played a former POW who goes back to Vietnam to free other soldiers.
Chuck Norris Once Killed Two Stones With One Bird
The full list of Chuck’s awards and honors is definitely too long for this article. But let’s recall some of them. 1969 – Karate’s triple crown for most tournaments won that year. 1969 – Fighter of the Year by Black Belt magazine. 1982 – Action Star of the Year at the ShoWest Convention.
As for his stars and inductions: 1989 – He received his star on Hollywood’s Walk of Fame. 1999 – He was inducted into the Martial Arts History Museum Hall of Fame. 2000 – He was given the Golden Lifetime Achievement Award by the World Karate Union Hall of Fame.
He also won Veteran of the Year (2001), Honorary Texas Ranger (2010), and Inspirational Acting in Television Award (1999). As you can tell, Chuck is a legend.
Chuck Norris Doesn’t Wear a Watch. He Decides What Time It Is
In an interview with the Bleacher Report, Chuck told the interviewer that there were two grounding forces in his life – faith and Gena. Family life with Gena stabilized him, taught him how to be a better person, and gave him the courage to move forward with things like his Kick Start foundation.
The organization is set in Texas, but Chuck hopes to expand it across the nation. The actor has seen firsthand what a life changing effect martial arts has had on the kids that come train at the center. They’re able to steer kids away from drugs and bad crowds.
Death Once Had a Near-Chuck Experience
After dominating the film industry, the meme industry, and the martial arts field, Norris has decided to step into different territory – the world of gaming. In 2021, he joined the game World of Tanks for a fun holiday special – Holiday Ops 2021.
As for why he decided to go with World of Tanks, he told Screen Rant: “As you know, I served in the armed forces, so World of Tanks is a sort of kindred spirit to me, and it’s not your typical military shooter: It’s one where you need to strategize to secure the victory.”
Chuck Norris Doesn’t Cheat Death. He Wins Fair and Square
Chuck has experimented with many types of martial arts, and after years of learning and practicing and learning some more, he’s developed his own method – Chun Kuk Do, or The Universal Way. “After years of training in different styles,” he explained, “I blended the best of each.”
His system is recognized by the United Fighting Arts Federation as “The Chuck Norris System,” and has been adopted by many martial arts enthusiasts and action fans worldwide. His system teaches the student self-defense, discipline, tranquility, and strength, both mental and physical.
Chuck Norris Refers to Himself in the Fourth Person
Chuck once helped a woman in labor get onto an ambulance. She gave birth in the hospital, but we’re sure that if she wouldn’t have made it on time, Chuck would have helped deliver the baby like a pro. It happened during one of the drive-in screenings of his film, Good Guys Wear Black.
One of the women who asked for his autograph that day was a pregnant lady whose water broke the second he greeted her. Well, maybe not that split second. Still, she was in line waiting for him. In any case, her water broke, and they tried to get ahold of her husband, but he was busy watching the movie in one of the 2,000 cars that were parked there that night. As he helped the lady onto the ambulance, she told him, “If it’s a boy, I’ll name him after you.”
Chuck Norris’ Cowboy Boots Are Made From Real Cowboys
Another great Chuck Norris film has got to be 1982’s Lone Wolf McQuade. It’s an epic action-packed film featuring him and David Carradine battling it out, kicking sand into each other’s eyes and moving their arms around in waves like real martial artists.
In the film, Chuck’s character chugs a bunch of Pearl Beer. And one time, after a particularly sandy scene, Chuck opened a can and poured it all over his head to revive himself. However, he forgot that spilling alcohol all over your face is not the best idea. “My eyes started burning, and I said, ‘What a stupid thing to do!'” he recalled.
Chuck Norris Narrates Morgan Freeman’s Life
Chuck’s character in Texas Ranger, Cordell Walker, is the reason we’re all cracking jokes at his mega macho image. But it’s not all fun and games with Walker. Chuck believes that through his role in Texas Ranger, he was able to send a good, serious message to the younger generation.
“I’ve been very fortunate to be able to use my series as a platform to show a good message for the kids,” he gladly stated. “We actually use the Kick Drugs (Kick Drugs Out Of America) kids in some of the episodes.” The Kick Drugs association teaches kids to kick their legs in the air and progress in karate instead of descending into bad habits.
Chuck Norris Can Clap With One Hand
Chuck definitely deserves a round of applause, one hand or both, your choice. The man opened numerous martial arts schools and has taught influential figures from all areas of life, including Bob Barker, Steve McQueen, Priscilla Presley, and Marie Osmond.
His time training the famous Steve McQueen proved to be life-changing, both for the sensai and the student. McQueen was so impressed with Norris that he convinced him to sign up for acting lessons at MGM. Good thing Norris took his advice!
If You Spell Chuck Norris in Scrabble, You Win. Forever.
When you kick as high as Chuck Norris, you’re going to need some good, fitting jeans to keep it all together and allow for greater movement. That’s why he launched his own line of jeans called “Action Jeans.” Surely, the new design changed the life of several martial artists who were sick of having to give up their fashion sense.
Chuck’s action jeans have a hidden gusset which allows for more stretching and freedom when moving around in them. “Won’t bind your legs” is the brand’s motto, and the actor even promises a free return and another pair if they ever get ripped or torn.
Chuck Norris Stands Faster Than Anyone Can Run
Chuck is a master of martial arts, and it showed in all of his competitions. He began competing in 1964, and even though his first four years were a bit iffy (a total of ten losses and two ties), he kept on going and improving over time.
Like a phoenix, Chuck rose from the ashes and scored 187 wins in the following six years of competing without losing! Not even once. His fans dubbed him the most powerful man on planet Earth. His incredible wins earned him the Professional World Full-Contact Middleweight Karate Championship for six years straight.
When Chuck Norris Writes, He Makes Paper Bleed
Other than Gena, his kids, and his work, Chuck is wholeheartedly devoted to his faith. When he’s not on the set of movie films, he’s out there spreading the word of God. He’s written numerous opinion columns on the Christian Conservative website, World Net Daily.
He’s been advocating for it since 2005. He believes that Christianity gives meaning to one’s life and leads to a healthier, happier state of mind. Chuck also serves on NCBCPS’s board of directors with his wife Gena. Both push for teaching biblical scriptures in public schools.
Chuck Norris Can Divide by Zero
In one of the episodes of Walker, Texas Ranger, Norris had to grab a snake off the ground. And it wasn’t a cobra, it was a rattlesnake. He had to lift it up into the air and count its rattles one by one. Norris wasn’t scared, you see, because, well, he’s Chuck Norris.
That being said, the scene was dangerous to shoot. The first take was fine. But then the director asked for a second take – and that’s when the snake sunk its fangs into Chuck’s hand! According to Norris, “blood started gushing out,” causing some crew members to run off in a panic. As a precaution, he was rushed to the hospital to be checked for venom. Luckily, there was none in his system.
Champions Are the Breakfast of Chuck Norris
At the peak of his popularity in the 1980s, Norris joined forces with animation company Ruby-Spears to draw out an animated series called Chuck Norris: Karate Kommandos. The cartoon featured Norris and a group of martial artists fighting villains.
The bad guys included characters like Superninja and The Claw. Even though a whopping 65 episodes were planned, only a few aired. “We only did six of them, and then a woman at CBS said, ‘Those are too violent,'” Chuck told MTV News in 2009.
When the Boogeyman Goes to Sleep, He Checks His Closet for Chuck Norris
For eight exciting seasons, Chuck fought off bad guys as the leading man in CBS’ series Walker, Texas Ranger, which was actually the first primetime series to be shot in Texas at Chuck’s insistence. In 2010, the actor was named an honorary member of the Texas Rangers.
State governor Rick Perry gave him the honors to acknowledge his devotion and hard work in raising awareness for underprivileged youths and helping them out through his martial arts programs. Chuck’s brother, Aaron Norris, served as an executive producer on the show and also received the honor.
Chuck Norris Can Dribble a Bowling Ball
Norris is usually good-humored about his public image and is often willing to laugh at himself. But when he was asked to make an appearance in the 2004 comedy Dodgeball, he refused because he wasn’t in the mood to drive three long hours to the film’s set in California.
Ben Stiller then called him to ask personally. He agreed but didn’t even go through the script. All he did for his cameo was put a thumbs up in the air and give a slight nod of the head. It was only when he saw the film in theaters that he understood the context. “In the end, when Ben’s a big fatty and watching TV, the last line of the whole movie is, ‘F***in’ Chuck Norris!’” the actor told Empire. “My mouth fell open to here… I said, ‘Holy mackerel!’ That was a shock, Ben didn’t tell me about that!”
Is Chuck Norris Dead?
The answer is no. The legend is alive and kicking. He’s 81 years old and doing well, despite some weird rumors about his alleged demise following the pandemic. He’s not as active around Hollywood, which is why many assumed he was no longer with us.
It’s tough to pin down exactly what he’s doing now, but to the best of our knowledge, Chuck is living in Texas with his family, running his and his wife’s water company called CForce.
As of 2021, Chuck’s net worth is approximately $70 million.