Ex-marine Shannon Ihrke emerges as one of UFC’s most popular ring girls

At first glance, it would seem impossible to fathom that a beauty such as Shannon Ihrke was once a member of the United States Marine Corps. Having grown up in the northern part of the state of Minnesota, she spent two years at St. Cloud State before leaving to enlist in the Marine Corps.

Boot camp for Ihrke would be held at Parris Island, South Carolina. Serving in an administrative capacity, Ihrke was stationed in North Carolina, South Carolina and Illinois. Various tasks for this Marine included accounting and legal administration. After four years as a Marine, she eventually reached the rank of sergeant (rank E-5), the highest ranking for a non-commissioned member of the Corps. Ihrke would leave to pursue a full-time modeling career.


Becoming a finalist for Maxim Magazine’s Hometown Hotties competition in 2011, she would be featured on the cover of Maxim’s Salute to the Military issue. Having also been a centerfold in Show Off Magazine, Empire Radio Magazine and Fight Magazine. Runway work included Fight Chix apparel and winning the 2013 Loop Rock Girl crown in Chicago for radio station WLUP-FM (97.9 FM).

Her debut as a ring girl in Mixed Martial Arts came in 2011 as a 23 year-old at Pro Elite: Big Guns. She would also appear in her hometown of Walker, Minnesota as the Ring Girl for the King of the Cage: Winter Warriors event of December 2011.

It was only a question of time before she would come to the attention of the UFC. Appearing in the November 2013 dated UFC Magazine (on the back page), she is poised to become one of the most popular personalities of the global promotion. Following in the footsteps of Arianny Celeste and Brittany Palmer, this All-American girl next door come to life is as tough and patriotic as she is stunning.

Image obtained from Busted Coverage

Image obtained from Busted Coverage