The son of the late Chip Reese, Casey Reese, has passed away from an overdose of prescription drugs, according to comments by Daniel Negreanu and Doyle Brunson on Full Contact Poker and Doyle’s Room. He was 20 years old.
On Tuesday, the following text appeared in Brunson’s official blog on his online poker site, Doyle’s Room: “It happened again yesterday, only this time it was Chip’s only son, Casey Reese. Casey was found in his apartment from an apparent overdose of prescription drugs. I had seen Casey a few days ago and he looked great. He was very handsome and extremely personable. I will always remember the closeness between Chip and Casey.” Brunson heard the news from his nephew and felt that he “let Chip down, but I don’t know what I could have done to help Casey.”
The news was confirmed by Negreanu, who posted in a thread on Full Contact Poker that speculated something might have happened to Casey. Negreanu noted that he was at the Bellagio when he heard the news and wrote on Full Contact Poker, “Everyone took it pretty hard. Kid was 20 years old, an incredible baseball pitcher, super smart, good looking kid… very sad. Chau [Giang] was a very good friend of both Chip and Casey and while he came down to play poker, he just couldn’t do it. It was a shock. People were both sad and also pretty angry at the same time.”
Casey passed away nearly 16 months to the day after Chip, who died on December 4th, 2007 in his Las Vegas home. At 56 years old, the elder Reese was the owner of three World Series of Poker (WSOP) bracelets and took down the inaugural $50,000 HORSE Championship in 2006 for $1.7 million. He defeated Full Tilt Poker pro Andy Bloch heads-up in that event; Phil Ivey, Jim Brechtel, T.J. Cloutier, David Singer, Dewey Tomko, Patrik Antonius, and Brunson were also at the final table. Chip also won bracelets in 1978 in a $1,000 buy-in Limit Seven Card Stud High-Low contest and in 1982 in a $5,000 buy-in Limit Seven Card Stud tournament. He logged over $2.2 million from WSOP tournament play.
According to ESPN, last December, Reese was “complaining of pneumonia symptoms, but never went to a hospital and died in his sleep He was found by his son… at his Las Vegas home.” Chip was inducted into the Poker Hall of Fame in 1991, at the time the youngest player to hold that honor. ESPN added, “Brunson and Reese eventually became business partners, investing in everything from oil wells and mining to TV stations and racehorses and becoming sports betting consultants.”
A 28 page thread developed on online poker forum TwoPlusTwo bidding farewell to the poker legend Chip Reese. Andy “BKiCe” Seth expressed his remorse of the loss of an ambassador of the game: “Is this real? I’ve never met Chip and don’t really even know much about him, but for some reason I feel like a good friend just died.” Pictures of Reese playing in high-stakes tournaments around the world pervaded the thread, as did anecdotes of players’ past experiences battling against the giant of the game.
The HORSE Championship trophy is named in Chip’s honor to this day. In 2008, it was won by Scotty Nguyen, who pocketed nearly $2 million for his victory. Nguyen defeated Mike DeMichele heads-up, capping an eventful run through a final table that also included Erick Lindgren, Barry Greenstein, 2009 National Heads-Up Poker Championship winner Huck Seed, and World Poker Tour founder Lyle Berman. Winning the tournament is a prestigious honor and players will receive their next opportunity when it kicks off on June 26th from the Rio in Las Vegas during the 40th annual WSOP.
We at Poker News Daily would like to express our sincere condolences to the entire Reese family.
I went to Dartmouth with Chipper, a/k/a “The Big Dipper”. We played poker in the basement one evening. It was penny-ante and great fun. With very little at stake, I bluffed with five card Queen – 9 crap. Chip called me with a Queen 7 or something. He was “royally” p o ed at me.
Chip’s roommate was Chuck Thomas, who became an all Ivy League halfback and died shortly before Chip. We all three played freshman football, but Chip preferred cards, drinking and sleeping. We were great friends and I miss them very much.