Mad Mike: A Tribute

Published on

I had been studying Earth science for a few years when I came across a man who called himself Mad Mike. He was a limousine driving daredevil who was proposing to prove the Earth was flat by launching himself in his own homemade rocket! Not only that — he was an Apple Valley resident.

I was writing for the paper at the time and I thought it would make a great story. Coincidentally,  I met Mike, for the first time in person, outside Stater Bros not too long after his story was published. On my way in to grab a few items, I approached him and said “You’re Mad Mike.”

Hesitantly he responded “Yeah.”

I introduced myself and told him I was the reporter who wrote his story.

A time after that, while visiting him at his launch site in Amboy, he admitted that when we first met he thought I was someone he owed money.

That was Mike — I never knew what he was going to say but it was always interesting.

Mad Mike with the Enepe’ rocket engine. Waldo Stakes.

After my first story broke, the Washington Post came looking for me. They wanted Mike’s contact info. He had been in the press before but this time was different. His claims about disproving the ball shape of the Earth had catapulted his fame to another level.

I wrote a series of stories on him and he eventually did have a successful launch that made world wide news. By this time he was doing interviews on national TV and had a documentary and TV show in the works. He used this momentum to announce his gubernatorial run which was my final story on him.

My homelife got busy and I took a hiatus from the paper. Mike would contact me periodically to update me on a new project and to get a story covered. I always passed along the story to the newsroom. We eventually lost contact.

A few years passed. Mike did another launch but it was unsuccessful this time. The parachute to slow the rocket during the landing was not deployed properly. Mike died upon impact.

I asked Mike during one of my interviews if he was scared of dying. 

He responded “This is serious.” He knew the danger he was getting into.

So this is my tribute to Mad Mike Hughes.

RIP to the man who inspired me to keep asking questions and live without fear.

Davina Fisher

Copyright Disclaimer: I do not own the rights to some of the photograph(s) or video(s) used in this post. Under Section 107 of the Copyright Act of 1976, allowance is made for “fair use” of photographs for purposes such as parody, criticism, commentary, news reporting, education, and research.

Latest articles

Big Lots sells Apple Valley Distribution Center for $318 Million – now pays lease to operate

APPLE VALLEY – Big Lots, a discount furniture retailer, announced during the summer that...

Newsom vetoes unemployment benefits for striking workers – fund already $20 billion in debt 

CALIFORNIA – Governor Gavin Newsom vetoed a bill, on Saturday, that would have provided...

$50,000 grant for Old Town Victorville facade improvements coming soon

VICTORVILLE – The City of Victorville is soon going to offer up to $50,000...

Newsom orders early sale of cheaper winter gas as prices go above $6 – stops short of suspending gas tax

CALIFORNIA – Assembly Republicans put out a list of solutions they say would help...
Powered by

More like this

PearlX completes first large-scale solar project at High Desert Villas after $100 million commitment

VICTORVILLE – PearlX, a solar and storage installation company, announced Tuesday its first large-scale...

Victor Valley Wastewater Reclamation Authority to help fuel Toyota Mirai cars

VICTORVILLE – Victor Valley Wastewater Reclamation Authority’ s (VVWRA) SoCal Biomethane facility will supply...

SB County Public Works collaborating with community through SeeClickFix App

  SAN BERNARDINO COUNTY – San Bernardino County residents can report issues like potholes, traffic...