Who is Wil Willis?
Wil Willis was born on 13 February 1975, in the United States of America, and is a reality television personality, best known for appearing in the History Channel show “Forged in Fire”. He is a former military officer and worked with the army for a decade before moving to a television career.
The Wealth of Wil Willis
How rich is Wil Willis? As of late-2018, sources estimate a net worth that is at $1 million, mostly earned through a successful career on television. He also earned a bit of money from his work in the military and as he continues his career, it is expected that his wealth will also continue to increase.
Early Life and Military Career
There is almost no information about Wil’s childhood and his life before he got to the military. It is known that he grew up in a military family which is one of the reasons why he became interested in that career. He did well in school but it was never his primary interest and after matriculating from high school, he decided to sign up with the army.
Following his childhood dream, he joined the 3rd Ranger Battalion of the 75th Ranger Regiment in the US Army. He served on active duty from 1993 to 1998 and then moved to the Air Force in which he became a Pararescueman, helping with the recovery and medical treatment in combat, as well as in humanitarian related missions. They are also called to support NASA missions, and have been used to recover astronauts during landings. He served with the USAF until 2007, and then served for one more year on reserve duty before fully retiring from his military career.
Transition to Television
The demand for accurate military expertise was big in the entertainment industry, and Willis used this opportunity to become a part of his first reality television show, named “Special Ops Mission”, which aired in 2009 on the Military Channel – now known as the American Heroes Channel. In the show, he performed solo special operations missions against a group of opposing operatives, which included regular and special veterans in a simulated scenario. Some of the missions shown in the show include a hostage rescue, an enemy group hijacking humanitarian aid, and an enemy camp protecting weapons of mass destruction. The show aired for six episodes, and received positive reviews for its realism.
In 2011, he then worked on a new show with the Military Channel called “Triggers: Weapons That Changed the World”, which had him testing various iconic weapons from history, including assault rifles, pistols and rocket-propelled grenades. He also talked about the historical significance of each weapon, even exploring the evolution of them. He is helped by fully licensed Master Armorer Mike Tristano, who has 25 years of experience in film and television.
Forged in Fire
After his run with “Triggers”, Wil then joined the History channel program called “Forged in Fire”, produced by Outpost Entertainment. The reality competition series has four bladesmiths competing in a three round elimination contest, forging various bladed weapons. He is the host of the show and there are also three judges, three weapons experts who help in determining the winner, who receives $10,000 and a championship title from his day’s win.
The show has been running for five seasons, and has proven highly successful, with judges often calling back some of the favorite smiths of their choice to compete for another chance at a cash prize. The show also spawned the series entitled “Forged in Fire: Knife or Death” which is hosted by Bill Goldberg. Some of the most popular weapons featured in the show include the Japanese Katana, the Khopesh, the Zweihander, the Viking War Axe, and the German Halberd. The name of each episode usually refers to a weapon difficult to create, and is the final challenge of the episode.
— HISTORY (@HISTORY) April 19, 2016
Personal Life and Social Media
For his personal life, it is known that Wil is married to Krystle Amina. The two were in a relationship for a long time prior to their marriage, but managed to keep the media spotlight away from them. In an interview, Wil mentioned that he likes to spend his free time with family and friends.
People have called him the human Swiss knife due to his ability to handle various weapons such as knives and guns. He also has a personal collection of guns at his home which he acquired during his military career, including a Beretta M9 pistol and a SR-25 semi-automatic sniper rifle. He does not hunt, but at times goes to the shooting range to keep his skills sharp.
Similar to numerous television personalities, he is highly active online through social media, having accounts on websites such as Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. He posts a lot of personal photos and videos on his accounts, including of himself with his wife, and him travelling to various destinations in the United States. He also uses his accounts to promote some of his recent projects, including new episodes of “Forged in Fire”.