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Friday, November 30, 2007

Evel Knievel's Final Jump

The King of Stuntmen made his final jump today:
    Evel Knievel, the red-white-and-blue-spangled motorcycle daredevil whose jumps over crazy obstacles including Greyhound buses, live sharks and Idaho's Snake River Canyon made him an international icon in the 1970s, died Friday. He was 69.

    Knievel's death was confirmed by his granddaughter, Krysten Knievel. He had been in failing health for years, suffering from diabetes and pulmonary fibrosis, an incurable condition that scarred his lungs.

    Knievel had undergone a liver transplant in 1999 after nearly dying of hepatitis C, likely contracted through a blood transfusion after one of his bone-shattering spills.

    Longtime friend and promoter Billy Rundel said Knievel had trouble breathing at his Clearwater condominium and died before an ambulance could get him to a hospital.

    "It's been coming for years, but you just don't expect it. Superman just doesn't die, right?" Rundel said.

    (Full story)
It seems like only yesterday that I was sitting down to watch Evel Knievel on TV. Yeah, OK, I admit it. I was a fan. I even had a few of his popular toys, namely the Stunt Cycle, the Sky Cycle, and the Crash Car. Fortunately, I never took it to the next level and started jumping moving cars with my Huffy.

Evel wasn't exactly the kind of role model parents wanted their kids to emulate, but impressionable young boys couldn't help but be amazed by his death-defying stunts. He'll be missed.


Medium Rare Please: said...

My brother had the stunt cycle- actually he had several. They didn't seem to hold up as well as the real thing.

We'll miss ya Evel!

Chris Wilde said...

He is survived by his twin brother Super Dave Osborne. But I haven't seen Super Dave on the air in awhile either! Do you suppose his injuries have finally forced his retirement?

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