An 'Evel' legacy

America's original daredevil would have celebrated 75 years today

Evel Knievel

For a guy who was already going by "Evel Knievel," the legendary stuntman sure had a kingly list of titles:

King of the Daredevils, The Last of the Gladiators, The Godfather of Extreme Sports, Guinness Book of Records holder for the most bones broken, an unwavering optimist, a doer, a go-getter, self-promoter extraordinaire, media genius, an enigmatic folk hero — an American legend. [EvelKnievel.com]

Robert Craig Knievel was born on Oct. 17, 1938, in Butte, Mont. Knievel was quick to push the limits of the law and his own safety. But it wasn't until the early 60s that the born daredevil found his calling. He started small enough — jumping his motorcycle across some boxes of rattlesnakes as a stunt for a little extra cash — but wound up an American icon (and millionaire) — zipping over busses and shooting out of cannons. The daredevil died Nov. 30, 2007, having struggled with diabetes and other health issues.

His picture-perfect stunts, though? They still take the cake. Here, a short visual tribute to the legend on his birthday.

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