Evel Knievel dies, aged 69

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Motorcycle daredevil Evel Knievel has died at the age of 69.

The motorcycle legend had suffered from ill health for several years, and suffered two strokes in June, 2007. His health was also failing due to pulmonary fibrosis, a condition that scarred his lungs. He is reported to have had trouble breathing at his home on Friday night (November 30, 2007) and died before the ambulance arrived.

His funeral will be held on December 10 at Butte Civic Center.

Evel Kneivel most recently settled out of court with rapper Kanye West, who portrayed himself as ‘Evel Kanyevel’ in a music video that re-enacted the legendary Snake Cayon Skycycle jump Evel undertook.

In 2006 MCN Editor Marc Potter and former News Editor Tony Carter journeyed to see Evel Knievel. Watch part one and part two of their video diary.

Knievel’s son Robbie has vowed to keep the family name associated with daredevil acts, most recently jumping £2.3 billion at an independnce day ride in the US.

“I’ve broken about 20 bones, give or take a few, over the years, but I keep jumping to continue the name and the tradition,” said Robbie talking after the jump. “Knievel is the most famous name on two wheels, and we’re the last of the last, so I’m keeping up the tradition.” 

Evel Knievel had shown an improvement in his long-term bad health in April, shorty after he was baptised by a TV evangelist.

Speaking to local newpaper the Montana Standard, he said: “I know that when I leave this earth, God’s going to take care of me, and I’m going to be all right. God has got me in the palm of his hand. When I die, I’m going to go to heaven.”

Adding “I’m a long ways from dying. I have new hope from my lung doctors.”

In 2005 Knievel had his gravestone made and shipped to his home after being told he had no more than three years to live.

Check out the December 12 edition of MCN for our full 16-page tribute to Knievel.

  • Evel Knievel funeral details
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  • Video: Evel Knievel’s greatest moments
Dan Thornton

By Dan Thornton