Social media reacts after Wu Yongning Chinese Rooftopper daredevil falls 62 floors to his death after trying to do a pull up for prize money.
Wu Yongning, 26, a self described daredevil calling himself ‘China’s First Rooftopper,’ has died after falling to his death while attempting to perform a stunt near the top of a 62-story building in China.
Local media reported the ‘rooftopper’ plunging from the Huayuan International Centre in Changsha, the capital of Hunan province in central China, on Nov. 8.
Notice of the incident hadn’t been publicly confirmed until a month later, when Yongning’s girlfriend and family members spoke of the man’s death over the weekend reported Beijing News.
A viral video clip, which racked up more than 15 million views on Chinese social media, shows Yongning — who had already reached the roof of the skyscraper — lowering himself over the edge of the building to do a pull-up stunt. But when he tried to hoist himself back up, he struggled for a few moments before losing his grip and plummeting down the side of the building.
The camera phone that he had set up to record the stunt quickly lost sight of him.
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Authorities describe the fatal fall as an accident, ruling out foul play. Police believe he plunged about 45 feet onto a terrace and died of his injuries either during or right after the plunge.
The daredevil’s girlfriend, identified only as ‘Jinjin,’ said she believes Yongning took an elevator ‘over 40 floors’ and began his climb ‘nearly 20 more floors’ until he reached the spot where he filmed.
The building is only open to the public until the 44th floor — beyond that, key cards are needed to access the Grand Hyatt Hotel.
Had Yongning prevailed, he would have received 100,000 yuan — about $15,000 — for the stunt. It is unclear who was offering that prize or whether in fact the prize had been sanctioned by the building and if so, why?
‘He planned to propose to his girlfriend [the day after the challenge],’ Yongning’s step-uncle Feng Shengliang told the South China Morning Post. ‘He needed the money for the wedding, and for medical treatment for his ailing mother.’
One friend commended Yongning’s selflessness in a post on the Chinese social media site Weibo.
‘You are one of those people in this world, you will do anything for your loved ones, absolutely anything,’ the user wrote, according to the BBC.
But others criticized him for the reckless act.
Wrote a social media user, ‘Why would you seek attention in such a dangerous way, just for your fans?’
Yongning was known for scaling skyscrapers without any safety equipment — just his own ‘martial arts training and careful planning,’ one of his Weibo posts said, according to the outlet. He shared nearly 300 videos of his death-defying acts.