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An American Hero
Robert "Evel" Knievel is one of the most unique heroes to earn a place in the collective psyche of this country. A high school dropout, an award-winning athlete, a petty thief, a motorcycle racer, and a political activist, Knievel earned his nickname because of his unlawful activities early in his life but rode that name to fame by consistently tempting death in the public eye. With a showman's panache and a madman's daring, he has risen-along with the likes of James Dean and Marilyn Monroe-past mere celebrity to the exalted level of American icon. Today, at sixty-two years of age, Evel still makes headlines, proving that the appeal of daredevil never dies. From his recent liver transplant to his son Robbie's jump off the Grand Canyon to his very public support of mandatory helmet laws, Knievel remains foremost in the minds of his millions of fans. Evel Knievel stands as a truly perfect example of a certain uniquely American aesthetic, one in which pride and heart can overcome any circumstances at all.
St. Martin's Press; April 2010