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Jessi Combs killed in ‘horrific accident’ during land speed record attempt

2012 Summer TCA Tour - Day 13

BEVERLY HILLS, CA - AUGUST 02: Co-host Jessi Combs speaks at the ‘Overhaulin’ discussion panel during the Discovery Networks/Velocity portion of the 2012 Summer Television Critics Association tour at the Beverly Hilton Hotel on August 2, 2012 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images)

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Professional racer and television personality Jessi Combs was killed Tuesday afternoon when her jet-powered land speed car crashed in the Alvord desert in Southeastern Oregon. She was 39.

Combs, who earned the title of “The fastest woman on four wheels” after previously setting the four-wheeled woman’s land speed record at the same site in 2013, was attempting to break her previous record on the dry lake bed when the accident happened.

Combs had previously recorded a 483.227 mph shakedown run at Alvord last year before the session was abandoned due to mechanical issues.

Though the Harney County Sheriff’s office did not immediately release the identity of the victim, Combs’s partner and teammate Terry Madden confirmed her passing on Instagram Wednesday morning.

“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,” Madden wrote. “She was the most amazing spirit that I have ever or will ever know.”

In addition to several successful land-speed record attempts, Combs was also known by fans from her appearances on several T.V. shows, including Overhaulin, All Girls Garage, and Xtreme 4x4. She also served as a host of Mythbusters.

Former Mythbusters host Kari Byron tweeted her condolences Wednesday morning.

“So sad to hear about Jessi. She was a badass. Always pushing limits. Sending smiles into the universe for her,” Bryon said.

A celebration of Combs’ life, as well as a foundation in her honor to “continue her efforts to empower young women and girls to follow their dreams” have both planned, according to a statement released by Combs’ family, though dates for neither have been released as of publication.