Here's How Much Evel Knievel Was Worth When He Died

There's no sympathy for the Devil unless you're the Rolling Stones. And when you're a legendary daredevil like Evel Knievel, people are too busy waiting to see if you crash and burn to worry about sympathy. Biographer Stuart Barker observes, "His fame had little to do with the stunts he successfully pulled off and everything to do with the epic failures and wipeouts." Much like the actual Devil, one the daredevil's defining falls involved snakes.

As Biography details, during the 1960s, Knievel settled in Moses Lake, Washington, and worked at a motorcycle shop. As a promotional stunt he said he would jump a motorcycle 40 feet, clearing a car and box of rattlesnakes in the process, and ride past a caged cougar after sticking the landing. But to quote Knievel, "Anybody can jump a motorcycle. The trouble begins when you try to land it." In this case, the troubled landed him in the box of rattlesnakes, thrilling an audience of 1,000 people. Thus began his life as a daredevil.

During his highlight reel of a career, Knievel attempted more than 75 ramp-to-ramp jumps on his mighty "crotch-rocket." He gained international acclaim and a miles-long list of injuries. But like the saying goes, no pain no gain. Here's how much money Evel Knievel gained from all that pain.

Evel Knievel wasn't a poor daredevil

In life, the road to success is often paved over the bones of past failures. But Evel Knievel, got ahead in life by breaking his bones on the pavement in spectacular fashion. Even after he almost crashed his way to heaven, he would continue to put his body through hell. Biography describes the 1967 debacle at Caesar's Palace where he attempted to bound over the casino's fountain with his motorcycle. The rear wheel clipped the edge of the landing ramp and Knievel had a nasty landing. He shattered his pelvis, fractured his femur, broke both ankles and a wrist, and suffered a concussion. He remained in a coma for 29 days.

In 1975, Knievel attempted to jump 13 buses at Wembley Stadium, and ended up bouncing off his motorcycle, which seemed intent on turning him into roadkill when it crashed into him. Knievel broke his pelvis but managed to physically walk away from the incident, per History. Afterward he insisted, "I've got to tell you that you are the last people in the world who will ever see me jump because I will never, ever, ever jump again. I am through."

Knievel broke that promise to himself and broke himself more with additional stunts until he literally jumped the shark in his last stunt. Or to put it more accurately, he failed to jump a bunch of sharks and broke more bones. Was it all worth it? According to Celebrity Net Worth, he was worth $3 million by the time he died in 2007. But when you're an adrenaline junkie, the danger is part of the payoff.