Darvin Moon’s biography

Darvin Moon
Darvin Moon (60 years)
over $5 200 000
Offline prizes
exact amount is unknown
Online prizes
The best result:
$5 182 601 for 2nd place in the $10 000 World Championship NLH at the WSOP 2009
Main achievements:
2nd place in 2009 WSOP Main Event

Darvin Moon was an amateur poker player who made it to the 2009 WSOP Main Event final heads-up and nearly repeated the feat of Chris Moneymaker.

Moon was a native of Oakland, Maryland, a Mid-Atlantic state in the northeast of the United States, where he lived all his life with his wife Wendy. Off the green felt, the man was a lumberjack and owned a small sawmill.

Unfortunately, the man passed away in 2020, at the age of 56. Darvin died at home, surrounded by family. There were "complications after surgery". According to his wife, the tragedy was most likely caused by a blood clot.

Feedbacks from friends attest that he was a model of modesty and adequacy, a person who was not spoiled by money. 

Poker path & Earnings

Darvin first got acquainted with cards in early childhood, when he played card games with his grandfather. Following the "poker boom" that hit the world after Chris Moneymaker's victory at the 2003 WSOP Main Event, he became interested in texas hold'em and began to study it, watching TV broadcasts and poker shows.   

Since 2006, he has regularly played home games with comrades from the fire department or construction companies.

Darvin Moon rose to fame in 2009 when he came to Las Vegas for the first time in his life and almost won the WSOP Main Event. The thing is, Moon reached the final table being a chip leader, but lost the top prize to young online crusher Joe Cada in the decisive battle.


By the way, during all eight days of playing ME WSOP at Rio, Darvin didn't shove at all, but still managed to beat some really strong players in an attempt to become one of the November Nine. In one of the hands, Moon was dealt pocket kings. After the player raised, his opponent went all-in, and he just folded K-K preflop.     

Second place earned the Maryland lumberjack nearly $5.2 million, but he "did not lose his head". Darvin continued to run his small family business (sawmill), working 10-12 hours a day and occasionally playing poker.

Moon really returned to his hometown, instead of moving to Las Vegas and trying to conquer Bobby's Room. He appeared at the poker table just several times, probably to pay homage to poker. The guy did not plan to become a poker pro.

Darvin Moon poker

After the success of 2009, the American played a few poker events that brought him about 30 thousand dollars. The last time he finished in the money was in the summer of 2016: Darvin took part in the $135 No Limit Hold'em tournament, held at the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino.

Overall, Darvin Moon won $5 210 576 in live tournaments. He never played poker on the Internet.

Interesting facts about Darvin Moon

  • Moon started to play Seven Card Stud with his grandfather and was not familiar with Texas Hold'em until 2003.
  • Until the player raised $5 million, he and his wife lived in a trailer.
  • It was a bit tight with money back in 2009, so Moon first planned to come to Las Vegas and sell the ticket. But when the player entered Rio and plunged into the atmosphere of WSOP, he still decided to take part in the tournament.
  • Darvin Moon was the only player who refused to wear Full Tilt sponsorship patches on his T-shirt during the 2009 WSOP Main Event final table. He chose a cap with the logo of his favourite team, New Orleans Saints, instead.
    Darvin Moon poker
  • All prize money from the Main Event, Darvin invested into purchasing a farm and new cars (pickup trucks) for his family. 
  • Darvin never had an email or credit cards. He also disliked online poker rooms and even earned the nickname "Luddite Logger" for being an opponent of technologies.
  • In addition to poker, the man had other hobbies: fishing and hunting.