AP
Joshua Rich
December 03, 2007 AT 05:00 AM EST

Legendary daredevil Evel Knievel died on Friday at age 69. The stunt icon — who jumped his motorcycle over canyons, stacks of cars, and the fountains at Caesars Palace — had reportedly been in failing health for years, suffering from diabetes, lung disease, and hepatitis C. Famous for his star-spangled jumpsuits and breathtaking feats, Knievel was a global pop-culture staple in the 1960s and 1970s thanks to the death-defying acts he performed in traveling shows and on a variety of TV series and specials. In 1977, he played himself in the fictional feature film Viva Knievel!, opposite an all-star roster including Gene Kelly, Red Buttons, and Frank Gifford. Unfortunately, though somewhat appropriately, the movie crashed at the box office.

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