It is with great sadness that we report that American strongman Mike Jenkins has died, age 31.
Confirmed by his wife, Keri, yesterday via Mike Jenkins’ Facebook page, the tragic news has been met with a flood of messages of condolences from his army of fans.
Keri later posted this touching message:
My husband picked the song that we first danced together to at our wedding. The lyrics were so powerful to me then, and even more to me now. “They can list my life from A-Z, All I’ve tried to do and tried to be, No matter how this world remembers me, Loving you will always be my legacy.” It continues, “If I live long enough to see all my dreams come true, It won’t mean half as much as loving you.”
After reading thousands of comments, texts, messages, statuses, etc, etc, from new and old friends alike, I realize that Mike Jenkins will be remembered for his strongest muscle of all – his heart. I knew he was touching people and changing lives, I saw it daily. However, I now realize I didn’t even have a clue…not a clue to the magnitude he was really doing this. I always told him I was so proud of him. He always laughed it off acting as if he acted in a way that any person would. We know otherwise.
Thank you ALL for sharing your memories and offering support in many ways. Mike shared a video right before going to bed the night before Thanksgiving. It’s a powerful video, but there is a quote that I feel embodies my husband. “It’s what you give of yourself to somebody else to make them great that eventually makes you great…today I’ll die a champion.”
We do not yet know why Mike passed away. His autopsy is scheduled for Monday. However, the doctors assure me that he was not in pain for he passed in his sleep. I promise to post information about his services once those things have been arranged.
Watch the video Keri refers to here:
It is not yet known the cause of Jenkins’ death but we understand from Keri’s message above that he passed away peacefully in his sleep.
Jenkins had great charisma and whilst the likes of English Strongman Eddie Hall may play up to the camera to create a fearsome persona, Jenkins took the opposite approach, far more akin to a gentle giant – laughing, smiling and always looking like he was enjoying himself.
Considered by many as a favourite for the World’s Strongest Man title in the next few years, Jenkins had already managed to win at Arnold’s Strongman Classic – a competition many consider the truest test of pure strength.
The strongman community is a close-knit one and we thought we’d share some messages from his competitors and friends:
Cant quite believe it RIP @Mike__Jenkins
— Terry Hollands (@terryhollands) November 28, 2013
@Mike__Jenkins the world has lost the nicest strongman to god today! RIP big mike. Heart goes out to your poor wife and family 🙁
— Eddie Hall – The Beast (@eddiehallWSM) November 28, 2013
Today mankind lost an honest, sweet and kind soul with the passing of Mike Jenkins. He was a brother, a… http://t.co/JBzPk3YY0y
— Derek Poundstone (@DerekPoundstone) November 28, 2013
my thoughts and prayers are with the Jenkins family. I'm sure the whole strongman community will be praying for you. RIP Mike Jenkins
— Warrick Brant (@WarrickBrant) November 28, 2013
Devastated to hear about my friend from The states. My thoughts are with all your loved ones. RIP @Mike__Jenkins
— Laurence Shahlaei (@biglozstrongman) November 28, 2013
Jenkins, and his tremendously pink converse shoes, shall be sorely missed.