Jessi Combs, former Mythbusters host, TV personality, and the world’s “fastest woman on four wheels” has died. She was 39 years old.
Combs died will attempting a land speed record in southeast Oregon. Details of the incident remain murky, however, news sources report that her jet-engined car crashed during a top speed attempt in the Alvord Desert on August 27th.
The Alvord Desert is a popular location for land speed records. Combs herself made several record attempts there, breaking the women's top speed of 393 mph in 2013, then later breaking her own record in 2016 by achieving a top speed of 477.49 mph, earning her the nickname "fastest woman on four wheels."
It may seem a little crazy to walk directly into the line of fire... those who are willing, are those who achieve great things. .— Jessi Combs (@TheJessiCombs) August 24, 2019
People say I’m crazy. I say thank you ;)
.#fastestwomanonearth #almost #fasterthanfast #jetcar #afterburner #landpsee… https://t.co/IrnCQQWMGJ pic.twitter.com/A5NZ6Luq0u
Combs was driving the North American Eagle Supersonic Speed Challenger, a 52,000-hp vehicle that uses the engine and fuselage of an F-104 fighter jet. Capable of supersonic flight when in the air, the ground vehicle achieves speeds that are highly dangerous and even the slightest bump in the surface can cause a catastrophic loss of control.
Racing team member and boyfriend Terry Madden posted a heartwarming tribute to Combs on his Instagram account.
View this post on Instagram
So I don’t know how to say any of this but it all needs said. I have never loved or been loved by anyone as much as this amazing woman @thejessicombs she was truly my unicorn and I enjoyed every single minute that I had with her. She was the most amazing spirit that I have ever or will ever know. Unfortunately we lost her yesterday in a horrific accident, I was the first one there and trust me we did everything humanly possible to save her!! I’m not ok, but she is right here keeping my going-I made her a promise that if this didn’t go well that I would make sure and do good with it, please help me with that, you are all going to see things on news please believe non of them.. we the family have drafted a release and it will come out today with more proper info, but I was just woke up by the media tracking me down and I need everyone of her true friends to do what she would want “take a deep breath, relax” and do good things with this. Please donate to nothing, I know there will be people try, we are finishing the documentary as she wished and the world will know the truth and her foundation will use those funds to do amazing things in this world and make her legacy live on properly. In the coming days her family and I will get the proper channels put together that you can then donate to that foundation but until you hear it from me wait please-I don’t want some asshole profiting off this (all ready had one try to sell us a video)... . . Love you all and thank you all for being such amazing friends to her, she dedicated her life to helping support others dreams and I promise I will continue that.
Far more than just a top speed challenger, Combs also starred on several Television shows including Spike TV's Xtreme 4x4, season seven of Mythbusters, Overhaulin', All Girls Garage, The List: 1001 Car Things To Do Before You Die, and How to Build... Everything. A skilled fabricator, Combs would often take part in projects that were typically dominated by men, inspiring an entire generation of women to take part in the automotive world.
She was also a decorated racer, having taken part in both the Baja 1000 and King of Hammers events. She even finished first place in the 2016 King of Hammers, acquiring the title of "Queen of Hammers."
Jessi's family have issued a statement saying they're planning a "celebration of Jessi's life" and also creating a foundation to "to continue her efforts to empower women and young girls to follow their dreams.”