Robbie Knievel Dies: Daredevil Son of Evel Knievel Was 60
Robbie died on Friday, January 13 in Reno, Nevada of pancreatic cancer. His older brother, Kelly Knievel, told CBS News he died after being in hospice care for three days.
“It was expected,” Kelly told CBS News. “He was in Reno with his three daughters by his side.”
Kelly said that daredevils like his late father and brother “don’t live easy lives, but it’s what they do.” Evel (full name Robert Craig Knievel) died of pulmonary fibrosis in 2007 at the age of 69.
“He was a great daredevil,” Kelly said. “If you look at his jumps, that’s what he should be known for. It’s what he loved doing.”
Robbie (full name Robert Edward Knievel III) was known by the nickname “Kaptain Robbie Knievel.” He completed more than 350 motorcycle jumps and set 20 world records during his gravity-defying career. One of his most famous jumps was carried out in 1989, when he completed the jump over the fountains at Las Vegas’ Caesars Palace. Twenty-two years prior, his father famously crashed doing the same stunt on New Year’s Eve 1967.
“That was for you, Dad,” Robbie declared after successfully completing the stunt.
More of Robbie’s famous stunts include a record-setting 228-foot jump over the Grand Canyon in 1999 (he broke his leg upon landing), jumping over a stretch of 30 limousines in 1998 (231 feet), jumping over two 13-story towers in Vegas in 1999, and over five military planes parked on the U.S.S. Intrepid in 2004. Robbie’s final jump was in 2011, when he careened across a group of tractor-trailers at a Coachella casino.
Robbie made a handful of television and film appearances in his lifetime, several being documentaries about his father. Robbie appears in the I Am Evel Knievel documentary, along with being the subject of Chasing Evel: The Robbie Knievel Story. He starred in A&E reality show Knievel’s Wild Ride in 2005 and made appearances in CHiPs in 1982 and Hawaii Five-O in 2015.
Robbie began his daredevil career as a teenager was inducted into the Motorcycle Hall of Fame in 2007.