Professional driver and TV host Jessi Combs dies attempting to break land speed record in Oregon desert

PHOTO: Jessi Combs speaks at the 2012 Summer Television Critics Association tour at the Beverly Hilton Hotel on Aug. 2, 2012 in Los Angeles.PlayFrederick M. Brown/Getty Images, FILE
WATCH News headlines today: Oct. 11, 2019

Professional driver and TV host Jessica "Jessi" Combs died in a jet car while attempting to break a land speed record in Oregon, officials said.

Combs, 39, who held the title of "fastest woman on 4-wheels," was attempting to break her own record she set in 2013 with a top speed of 440 mph, according to her team's website.

Deputies from the Harney County Sheriff's Office responded to a 911 call following the crash in the Alvord Desert.

Combs was identified as the driver of the vehicle and was pronounced dead on scene, officials said in a press release.

The cause of the crash remains under investigation.

Combs' family released a statement about her death:

"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, as she pursued setting a land speed record in the North American Eagle on August, 27th 2019 on a dry lake bed in Oregon," the statement said. "Jessi’s bright smile, positivity, and tenacious pursuit of her dreams inspired everyone who met her. Her drive and spirit were infectious, and she served as a role model for young girls and women around the world. Surounded 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.."

Combs had posted on social media about preparing for the record-breaking attempt.

While her main focus was as a driver, Combs also appeared on a number of TV shows including the host of the seventh season of "Mythbusters" in 2009.

A member of her team, Terry Madden, posted about her death on Wednesday morning.

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.

A post shared by Terry L. Madden (@terry_madden) on Aug 28, 2019 at 5:51am PDT