Erik Roner, the 39-year-old daredevil known for starring on MTV’s “Nitro Circus” died in a tragic skydiving accident on Monday morning. Roner was participating in a group skydive at the 4th Annual Squaw Valley Institute Celebrity Golf Classic charity golf tournament in Olympic Valley, California, when he hit a tree while attempting to land.
As reported by NBC News on September 29, “more than 100 people watched in horror as MTV star and extreme sports athlete Erik Roner was killed when hitting a tree while skydiving in California.” Roner died at the scene. A video of the accident describes that Roner hit the tree at a very high speed.
Witnesses stated that the daredevil was part of a three-man parachute team during Monday’s performance, but that he was off-target during the landing. “He hit a tree … he hit a tree so hard. I don’t know what happened from there,” said one eyewitness. After the hard hit and becoming entangled in a tree high above the ground, rescue personnel rushed to Roner but it was too late.
Roner, who grew up in Northern California and who had been skydiving, BASE jumping and professionally skiing since 2000, was a member of the extreme sports Nitro Circus Crew featured on MTV. Erik Roner’s website describes him as a young man who had traded in playing soccer and a degree in Graphic Design for the pursuit of “excitement and excellence.” His biography ends with a quote by Hunter S. Thompson: “Faster, faster, faster until the thrill of speed overcomes the fear of death.”
Erik had regularly donated his time to charity events. In a statement, Nitro Circus members said that the energetic and vibrant daredevil is leaving behind “a beautiful wife and [two] amazing kids that will miss him dearly.” MTV announced the shocking news of the daredevil’s tragic death with the following words: “With sad hearts we announce the tragic death of Erik Roner. We love & miss you already Erik.”