Stuntman Eddie Braun Will Attempt Evel Knievel’s Snake River Canyon Jump
Evel Knievel serves as a childhood hero for many, including stuntman Eddie Braun who plans to attempt the daredevil’s Snake River Canyon Jump in Idaho.
According to the Seattle Times, Braun will be launching in a rocket named “Evel Spirit” on Sept. 17. The rocket is nearly identical to the model Knievel used for his failed attempt on September 8, 1974. Braun wants to prove Knievel could have made it had his parachute not prematurely deployed.
Sons will be carrying on their father’s legacy as Kelly Knievel and rocket designer Scott Truax, whose dad constructed the original rocket cycle for Knievel are supporting Braun.
“Evel took off on one side of the canyon in 1974. I’m hoping his spirit lands on the other side of the canyon in 2016,” said Braun. “How many people get to fulfill the dreams of their hero? It’s kind of like touching Superman’s cape.”
He has completed the necessary paperwork and will launch a few miles away from Knievel’s original site that’s near Twin Falls, Idaho.
“He flipped a coin with his life, and came out alive,” said Kelly Knievel, whose father died in 2007 at 69 after suffering from diabetes and pulmonary fibrosis. “My dad certainly had nine lives, didn’t he?”
Braun became a professional stuntman because of Knievel, serving as a stunt double for actors such as Ray Liotta and Charlie Sheen, along with coordinating stunts for movies, TV shows and music videos.
Truax used his father’s blueprints to reconstruct the rocket. He wanted to show that his dad’s version of Evel Knievel’s “X2 Skycycle” would’ve worked, if not for the parachute malfunction.
“With this re-creation, it is my intent to clear his name and tell his amazing story,” Truax said in an email. “I like to think that instead of looking up at the rocket launch, he and Evel will be looking down on it and that’s a much better view.”
For three years, Braun tried to launch this project and invested nearly $1.5 million. He’s looking to raise another $150,000.
He said he’s secured the proper permission and permits from private land owners, Federal Aviation Administration, even Homeland Security, to green light his blastoff. Others have stepped up as well, including Slash from Guns N’ Roses. Braun said the guitarist recorded a theme song for him, using Elton John’s hit, “Rocket Man.”
The jump will be live-streamed on the web. The original attempt can be seen below.
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