Self-described “Fastest Woman on Four Wheels” Jessi Combs was killed August 27 in her jet car practicing in the Alvord Desert in Oregon. She was 39 years old.
As local news station KTVZ reports, Combs was practicing to break the 398 mph run she made in her North American Eagle Supersonic Challenger jet car back in 2013. She achieved a speed of 483.227 just last year before she aborted the attempt due to mechanical problems.
Besides inspiring women and girls to go for their dreams, even in a completely male-dominated pursuit like racing; she inspired men as well with her positive messages and the bravery and ability to turn her words into actions. She was a hands-on builder, too.
Not only was she attempting her Fastest Woman On Four Wheels runs, but she also hosted a number of television shows including Mythbusters, was a spokesperson for different products including a line of women’s welding gear for Lincoln Welding and was a prolific racer. She was a podium finisher at the Baja 1000, won the 2016 King of Hammers event where she received her “Queen of Hammers” moniker, was an Ultra4 National Champion, and more.
As stated in her bio she loved to “build her own ideas, go fast, get dirty, have fun, and still be feminine through everything she does in life.”
Today her family released this statement:
It is with extreme grief, and in celebration of her life that her family and close friends share that race car driver, and TV personality Jessi Combs, passed away in a fatal crash, where she was pursuing a land speed record in the North American Eagle on August, 27th 2019 on a dry lake bed in Oregon. The details of the crash have not been released at this time.
Jessi was known for her bright smile, positivity, and tenacious pursuit of the fulfillment of her dreams. Her drive was infectious, and she served as a role model for young Girls, and Women around the world. People that loved her and followed her became family, all bonded together by adventure and passion. Her fans adored her, and she lived to inspire them. Jessi’s most notable dream was to become the fastest woman on Earth, a dream she had been chasing since 2012. Combs was one of the rare dreamers with the bravery to turn those possibilities into reality, and she left this earth driving faster than any other woman in history.
Surrounded by her family and friends at the time of her passing, Jessi lived fearlessly and her legacy lives on in the countless lives she touched.
Jessi is known for her hosting work on television series including “All Girls Garage,” “Overhaulin’,” Extreme 4×4 and Autoblog’s “The List.”
Jessi is survived by her mother Nina (Chuck, niece Nina Alayne) Darrington, Father Jamie (Sandy) Combs, brother Kelly Combs (Cary, Eli, Ethan and Anna), sisters Danielle Theis (Jacin, Justice, Nation), Brother Austin Darrington (Leah, Lane) Kayla Green, Kyrie Darrington, Natasha Darrington
Stepsisters Rebekah Hall (son Aaren Kearns), Arielle Hall (son Dru Hanson). And Jessi‘s love Terry Madden and his son Dalton.
A celebration of Jessi’s life is being planned and a foundation is being created to continue her efforts to empower women and young girls to follow their dreams.