After the release of the Stunt Cycle, the Knievel toys were the best selling item for Ideal.[20]. Knievel reportedly suffered a broken back and a concussion after getting thrown off and run over by his motorcycle, a Harley-Davidson. Knievel then used a Norton Motorcycle Company 750cc for only one year, 1966. The terrific forces these machines passed on to his body are well illustrated in the super slow motion footage of his Caesars' landing. Sure, I was scared. [21] For 35 years, Knievel held the record for successfully jumping the most stacked cars on a Harley-Davidson XR-750 (the record was broken in October 2008). The cameraman was admitted to the hospital and received treatment for an injury near his eye, but received no permanent injury. When the company refused to promote him to vice-president after he had been a few months on the job, he quit. Afterwards, Knievel retired from major performances and limited his appearances to smaller venues to help launch the career of his son, Robbie Knievel. I loved the thrill, the money, the whole macho thing. Knievel died from pulmonary fibrosis caused by diabetes in Clearwater, Florida on November 30, 2007, aged 69. During a 1968 interview, Knievel stated, "I don't care if they say, 'Look, kid, you're going to drive that thing off the edge of the Canyon and die,' I'm going to do it. Throughout his daredevil career, Knievel was known for his sensational leather jumpsuits that were compared to the jumpsuits worn by Elvis Presley. A. J. Foyt made Knievel part of his pit crew for the Indianapolis 500 in 1970. [35][36], Knievel had partnered with Six Flags St. Louis to name a new wooden coaster after "America's Legendary Daredevil". At approximately the same time, Fanfare Films started production of Evel Knievel, a 1971 movie starring George Hamilton as Knievel. Also in 1977, Warner Bros. released Viva Knievel!, a movie starring Knievel as himself and co-starring Lauren Hutton, Gene Kelly and Red Buttons. Evel Spirit Photo. Evel Knievel (October 17, 1938 – November 30, 2007), born Robert Craig Knievel, was an American daredevil and entertainer. Between December 1969 and April 1970, Knievel used the Laverda American Eagle 750cc motorcycle. Business was very good until game wardens realized that Knievel was taking his clients into Yellowstone National Park to find prey. After being thrown off, he skidded for 50 feet (15 m). In the 1971 movie, Evel Knievel, George Hamilton (as Knievel) alludes to the canyon jump in the final scene of the movie. Both parents decided to leave Butte. Also in 1974, Evel and Amherst Records released at the Sound City Studios the self-titled album Evel Knievel, which included a press conference, an anti-drug talk for his young fans, and four other tracks. Actual footage from Evel's L.A. After the Snake River jump, Knievel returned to motorcycle jumping with ABC's Wide World of Sports televising several jumps. Template loop detected: Template:Location map+, Since the 1974 launch, seven daredevils have expressed interest in recreating the jump, including Knievel's two sons, Robbie and Kelly. No warranties, expressed or implied, are provided for the business data on this site, its use, or its interpretation. Again coming up short, Knievel crashed, breaking his left wrist, right knee and two ribs. To keep his name in the news, Knievel proposed his biggest stunt ever, a motorcycle jump across the Grand Canyon. Although Knievel landed on the safety deck above the 14th bus, his landing was successful and he held the record for jumping the most buses on a Harley-Davidson for 24 years (until broken by Bubba Blackwell in late 1999). In 2006, Evel had an internal morphine pain pump surgically implanted to help him with the excruciating pain in his deteriorated lower back, one of the costs of incurring so many traumas over the course of his career as a daredevil. Please verify address for mailing or other purposes. Krystal Kennedy-Knievel has only one known connection. The Bell Star helmet used in the Caesars' Palace jump is credited for saving Knievel's life after he fell off the motorcycle and hit his head on the ground[14] (following the Caesars Palace crash, each of Knievel's full-face helmets bore the slogan, "Color Me Lucky"). It was Evans who filmed Knievel's famous landing. [29] According to the investment magazine, Registered Rep., Knievel left his entire estate to Krystal.[30]. The 60-minute program Richard Hammond Meets Evel Knievel aired on December 23, 2007, less than a month after his death. Evel Knievel's 1988 self-produced documentary was entitled Last of the Gladiators. The crash and subsequent stay in the hospital were a publicity windfall. His memorabilia was then stored at Kent Knigge's farm in Filer, Idaho, seven miles west of Twin Falls. The term Last Gladiator was coined and attributed to Knievel circa 1971. Days later, Knievel successfully received the transplant. Ideas included jumping across the Mississippi River, jumping from one skyscraper to another in New York City, and jumping over 13 cars inside the Houston Astrodome. I really wanted to fly through the air. [...] You're in the air for four seconds, you're part of the machine, and then if you make a mistake midair, you say to yourself, "Oh, boy. Attempting his stunts on motorcycles without modern suspension was a primary factor in Knievel's many disastrous landings. In interviews, he said the reason for the switch was because he saw how Liberace had become not just a performer, but the epitome of what a showman should be, and Knievel sought to create his own variation of that showmanship in his own jumps. Krystal Kennedy-Knievel, Self: I Am Evel Knievel. American Motorcycle, Vol. [6]:38[7]. He was no longer satisfied with just receiving free motorcycles to jump with. [27] Arum partnered with Invest West Sports, Shelly Saltman's company, to secure from Invest West Sports two things: first, the necessary financing for the jump, and second, the services of Saltman, long recognized as one of America's premier public relations and promotion men, to do publicity so that Knievel could concentrate on his jumps. To help support his family, he switched careers and sold insurance for the Combined Insurance Company of America, working for W. Clement Stone. Schuller Admires Daredevil's "Possibility Thinking"",, "Evel Overcome With Good; Daredevil Knievel's testimony triggers mass baptisms at Crystal Cathedral",, "Evel Knievel, 69, Daredevil on a Motorcycle, Dies",, "Evel Knievel dies at 69; had long been in failing health",,,, "Hero's final salute: Butte readies for Knievel's funeral",, "Off Beat: Evel Knievel remembered and honored with new museum exhibit",,, "Daredevil successfully powers rocket over Snake River Canyon",, "Museum honoring daredevil Evel Knievel opens in Kansas",, "General Motors thanks the American people with one-day commercial",, "General Motors: Thank You (We All Fall Down)",,,, "Evel Knievel; All-American motorcycle daredevil who thrilled a generation but then lost his health, his reputation and his fortune",, "Evel Knievel: Motorcycle daredevil famed for his bone-breaking jumps (Obituary)",,, Transcript, Audio, Video of Knievel's religious conversion testimony at the Crystal Cathedral, The term was made popular in the 1971 movie Evel Knievel starring George Hamilton. Knievel credited much of his later success to Stone and his book. He agreed to return nine of the policies and be paid full benefits on only one, if Combined allowed Tonning to return to work. Knievel knew the jump was very questionable, but stated, "I went ahead and did it anyway. However, he used the bike only for wheelies and did not jump after retiring the XR-750.[11]. Knievel hired subcontractor and aeronautical engineer Doug Malewicki to build him a rocket-powered cycle to jump across the Snake River, and called it the Skycycle X-1. On October 14, 1977, Knievel pleaded guilty to battery and was sentenced to three years' probation and six months in county jail, during which he publicly flaunted his brief incarceration for the press.

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