The tough-guy action star Chuck Norris is celebrating his 80th birthday and he has done a lot in that time.
Nowadays, he is known for memes and jokes about his legendary toughness and extraordinary skills and abilities. As one meme proclaims, guns carry HIM for protection.
He was born Carlos Ray Norris on March 10, 1940, allegedly in a hospital he built himself.
Some of His Toughness May be a Result of His Time in the Air Force
He served in the Air Force when he was 18, and it was in the Air Force that he got the nickname “Chuck”. It was while he was stationed at the Osan Air Base in South Korea that he started studying martial arts.
Martial Arts is Where he Distinguished Himself
In 1962, he left the service and began work as a karate instructor. He became the first westerner ever to achieve the rank of 8th-degree black belt in taekwondo, and earned many distinctions, honors and awards.
He got his Big Break from Bruce Lee
In 1972, he got his big break in the martial arts film “The Way of the Dragon”, where he and Bruce Lee had an iconic fight scene that established Norris as tough, when his character would not quit fighting, even with a broken arm and leg.
Norris has had an Action-Packed Career
Norris often had roles where he fought for justice against bad guys, like “Good Guys Wear Black”, and he had a series that ran eight seasons, “Walker, Texas Ranger”.
In addition to many movies and TV, he has written books on martial arts, exercise, philosophy, politics, Christianity, western novels and has written a biography.
Chuck Norris Memes Introduced Norris to Whole New Generations of Fans
Memes were born of Chuck Norris Facts, a series of factoids that became an internet sensation, and people applied pictures to these factoids and they became memes.
“Walker, Texas Ranger” may well have provided the seed ideas for the facts and memes, because it featured over the top episodes of Norris’ character always triumphing over the cartoonishly villainous bad guys.
These memes contain hyperbolic claims and impossible deeds that cast Norris as a super-tough alpha-male archetype. These include “facts” like, “Death Once had a Near-Chuck Norris Experience” and “In an emergency, 911 calls HIM”.
Norris has a good sense of humor about the Chuck Norris Facts that end up in memes, and has stated that his favorite is, “They once tried to carve Chuck Norris’ face into Mount Rushmore, but the granite wasn’t hard enough for his beard”.
Chuck Norris has a Soft Side
Chuck Norris isn’t all toughness. He has a soft side that has made him an established and long-time supporter of a number of charities which include the Make-A-Wish Foundation and the United Way.
He even started a charitable organization of his own, called Kickstart Kids. This charity uses karate to teach and empower youth to achieve their greatest potential through core values such as discipline and respect.
Chuck Norris memes make us laugh, but still have respect.