Daredevil killed in the 1970's - help me find articles about this...
February 24, 2011 7:07 AM   Subscribe

Please help me find articles, about a daredevil who was killed doing a stunt in the late 1970's...

Hi everyone,

In the 1970's, I read an article in a newspaper about a daredevil who was killed doing a stunt (this was probably in the mid to late 1970's).

This guy's stunt was to rope himself to a jet airliner, and be dragged along by it while the jet flew through the air.

He was ultimately killed when the jet flew into a rainstorm. He was in radio contact with someone else (not sure if it was the pilots or his ground crew) and said the rain drops hitting him at high speed, felt like he was being hit by pebbles hurled at him.

I did some googling but I've been unable to find any citations about this.

Any assistance is appreciated.
posted by thermonuclear.jive.turkey to Grab Bag (4 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Speaking as a big commercial airliner buff, I have never heard of anything like this. The closest thing I know of to this is the Human Fly stunt that took place on top of a DC-8 while it made a few passes around an airfield. That was back in the 1970s. Doing some Googling around it appears there's a lot of misinformation out there, as some posts I found did indeed attribute the "killed by a rainshower" fate to him, and as far as I know, that's untrue. I think doing some searching in the Google News Archive (start here) and weeding out the Human Fly that climbs skyscrapers you may be able to find more about him.

This is not to say that someone else didn't do a similar stunt with a tragic outcome, but if it happened, I haven't heard anything about it.
posted by crapmatic at 10:41 AM on February 24, 2011

There was a stuntman who died in 1981 after falling from a plane to which he was strapped...

Australian stuntman Jim Bailey, known as ''The Human Torpedo,'' fell 500 feet to his death from an airplane while making a film for television Wednesday, authorities said. Initially, authorities said Baily was performing for ABC-TV's ''That's Incredible,'' but the show's producer denied having any connection with the accident. Witnesses, including members of the Maui Fire Department and the rescue unit, said Bailey, a resident of Brisbane, Australia, was suspended underneath a single-engine Ballanca by a strap and belt when the belt broke. He hung onto the strap for a few seconds before falling.
Officials said the stunt called for Bailey to hang on under the plane during takeoff and slide to a landing when the plane made a ''touch-and-go'' on the strip.
posted by orme at 10:54 AM on February 24, 2011

I actually saw a video years ago of Jim Bailey and it happened just like that. The camera was mounted under the plane with him. It is on youtube. Fatal Amateur Stunt Footage..The death of 'DIY stuntman' Jim Bailey. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rIP2IMaTmLM
posted by shaarog at 11:06 AM on February 24, 2011


crapmatic this article elaborates on your recollection and mine, according to this article he did get hurt when the plane flew through a rainstorm but it says he survived. Could be I'm confused by my 30+ year-old memory.
posted by thermonuclear.jive.turkey at 11:10 AM on February 24, 2011

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