RIP, Steve Fossett

Daredevil declared dead five months after disappearance
By Michael O'Connor,  Newser User
Posted Feb 16, 2008 5:44 AM CST
RIP, Steve Fossett
Elevation map shows extent of search for pilot Steve Fossett and locations of known plane crash sites since 1964; 2c x 5 inches; 96.3 mm x 127 mm   (Associated Press)

He vanished on a routine flight five months ago, and now daredevil Steve Fossett has been declared dead at the age of 63, the AP reports. The famous world record breaker was last seen flying a small plane over western Nevada where 15-20 private planes have disappeared since 1950. The first man to circle the world solo in a hot air balloon, Fossett aspired to "be the best in everything."

Fossett's most famous feats include swimming the English Channel, breaking the round-the-world sailing record by six days and completing the Ironman Triathlon. He competed against and collaborated with friend Richard Branson and survived a few close calls, including a 29,000-foot fall into the Coral Sea. Despite the dangers, he once said, "I plan to be setting and breaking records indefinitely." (More Steve Fossett stories.)

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