Stuntman Evel Knievel

Celebrity Q&A, People
on March 23, 2008

What was the real name of the stuntman Evel Knievel, who died recently?
—Jery Lewis, Kannapolis, N.C.

The renowned motorcycle daredevil was born Robert Craig Knievel Jr. in Butte, Mont. He acquired his nickname after a reckless-driving charge landed him in a Montana jail; he changed the spelling because he didn't want people to think he was actually "evil." Knievel—portrayed by actor George Hamilton in a 1971 biographical movie—died Nov. 30 at age 69 from complications of diabetes and pulmonary fibrosis.