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Johnny Strange Dead: Renowned Adventurer Dies In Wingsuiting Accident At 23

Thu, October 1, 2015 9:27pm EDT by Beth Shilliday 2 Comments
Johnny Strange Dead
Courtesy Getty

Longtime adventurer Johnny Strange has been tragically killed in a wingsuiting accident. Johnny was only 23 but he first made headlines at the tender age of 12 when he climbed the first of the ‘7 Summits’ on Mt. Vinson in Antarctica.

Johnny Strange, 23, has died in a wingsuiting accident in Switzerland. He was a lifelong thrill seeker, becoming the youngest person to climb the tallest peaks on all 7 continents – known as the “7 Summits” in the adventure world – by the age of 17. Wingsuiting is a notoriously dangerous sport where users employ a “squirrel suit” to jump off peaks then fly through valleys before deploying a parachute to land.

After Johnny completed the grand slam of mountaineering, he became a professional wingsuit pilot. Switzerland is a top location for those athletes to jump from as the high peaks and deep valleys allow for long flights, often flying close to rock walls and tree lines. But something went wrong during a jump on Oct. 1 and he was killed.

Johnny had called in to the Kevin & Bean morning show on LA’s KROQ-FM on Sept. 28 to discuss his latest project. He told the radio hosts he was shooting a dangerous wingsuit proximity video where “we fly super close to stuff.” Following the interview, he posted video of a new wingsuit flight to his social media. After waiting for a weather window, the video shows him flying through a treeline, narrowly missing tall pines as well as skirting large cliff walls. It’s terrifying to watch!

Many renowned rock climbers have turned to the sport of wingsuiting for the rush that it brings. Famed climber Dean Potter, 42, was killed in a wingsuiting accident in May that also took the life of his jumping partner Graham Hunt. 29. The pair were attempting to fly through a rock “notch” in Yosemite National Park when they clipped the rock and were killed instantly. Since the start of 2015, there have been 11 known fatalities in the sport of wingsuiting.

HollywoodLifers, do you feel sorry for people who die in wingsuiting accidents?

— Beth Shilliday