Contributed by: filbert Friday, November 30 2007 @ 11:22 PM CST
CLEARWATER, Fla. – 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. He also suffered two strokes in recent years.
For a guy like me who spent his formative years in the 1970’s, Knievel was a symbol of the wacked-out striving for . . . . whatever that lifted humanity above mere animals.
Rest in peace, Evel.