Throwback 70s | Vintage

He Climbed One Of The World's Tallest Building With No Ropes, Nets Or Safety Equipment, But What Happened To The Human Fly?

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They say that in New York City you can always tell who the tourists are: they're the ones looking up at the city's huge skyscrapers.

Most "real" New Yorkers wouldn't be caught dead looking up at the city's skyline, but they made an exception on May 26, 1977, when an unlikely stunt brought the entire city to a standstill for 3 hours. That morning, George Willig started a historic climb up Tower 2 of the World Trade Center.

At the time, the South Tower was the third tallest in the world, behind the North Tower and the Sears Tower. Starting in the early hours of May 26, Willig began a terrifying 110 story climb to the top of the tower with just a bag of water, some sandwiches, and a climbing tool he designed himself.

Police arrived on the scene very quickly, where a crowd of onlookers and reporters were already watching Willig's climb. With no other way to reach the climber, a pair of officers - including a suicide expert - boarded a window washing bucket and tried to grab Willig mid-climb.

Willig managed to avoid being pulled into the bucket, and explained that he knew what he was doing. The police tried to pass him a note to talk him out of his plan, but he only signed it "Best Wishes to my co-ascender" and passed it back to them.

So who was this daredevil, and why was he climbing the tower in the first place?

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