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Wallenda siblings cross high wire 25 stories over Times Square

By Ben Hooper
Wallenda siblings cross high wire 25 stories over Times Square
Spectators watch from an apartment window as performer Lijana Wallenda approaches the end of her high wire walk above Times Square when Nik and Lijana Wallenda cross Times Square on the high wire on Sunday in New York City.  Photo by John Angelillo/UPI | License Photo

June 24 (UPI) -- A pair of wire-walking siblings performed a world-first when they crossed a high wire suspended 250 feet over New York's Times Square.

Nik and Lijana Wallenda, part of the multi-generation Flying Wallendas family of tight rope walkers, became the first performers Sunday to walk a high wire suspended over Times Square.

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The siblings started on opposite sides of the wire and met in the middle, where they executed a delicate procedure where Nik stepped over Lijana so they could continue in their respective directions.

Lijana Wallenda said the wire walk was about overcoming her fears after an injury during a rehearsal two years ago left her with severe injuries requiring reconstructive surgery on her face.

"Of course you get butterflies and a little bit sick to your stomach, like 'What am I about to do? What is wrong with my family?'" she told ABC's Good Morning America. "But then I remembered all the training and how hard I worked, and you have to fall back on that. I knew my ability. I knew I could do it."

Nik Wallenda said he saw the stunt as an homage to one of his family's most famous performances, a tight rope walk at Madison Square Garden in 1928. He said he is already planning his next stunt -- a wire walk over a volcano.

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