“Swooping the Serenity”
Acrylic on canvas
While waiting in the loading area for the Caravan to land, I and a group of other jumpers witnessed a skydiver under a reserve canopy with his main pilot chute trailing.
For the 2019 skydiving fatality report, USPA should include those who perished in the Dillingham accident.
Growing up, I would constantly tell my parents that one day I’d skydive, too. They’d always tell me how expensive and dangerous it was, I think because a part of them did not want to see pictures of their daughter hanging off the strut of a Cessna.
Stu Metcalfe, D-2563, is 71 years young and still killin’ it. This Cornhusker started skydiving in March 1969 in Lincoln, Nebraska, and soon became interested in precision accuracy.
“Cool Swoop, Hot Sun”
Ismael Iribar | B-45880
Thank you very much for the wonderful and informative article and interview of Dr. Anna Hicks by Annette O’Neil (“Thin Air—Busting Lingering Myths About Hypoxia,” May 2019 Parachutist). It is indeed very important to inform our fellow skydivers about the risks of hypoxia.
I had worn an open-face helmet with goggles for many years, but after starting to wear glasses, I decided to get a full-face helmet that could accommodate them. I used this helmet on skydives and in the tunnel for more than a year before I had any problems.
I would jump from the low parts of our roof with a shaky umbrella or quartered-up bedsheet, neither of which worked. I always crashed with a thud. But the seed was planted, and it wouldn’t be long before I’d try it for real.
Jeremy Dubansky is a fun-loving guy who has become a large presence in the Midwestern skydiving scene. He travels extensively to events, has a genuine love of his sky family and helps out jumpers in any way he can.
“Watching My Opening”
Heather Weter | B-47715
Hats off to Jim Crouch’s article “A Record Low—the 2018 Fatality Summary” (April Parachutist). Crouch’s article points out the significance of the fatality index rate being at its lowest ever in our sport: one in 254,000 jumps (or 0.39 per 100,000 jumps).
I don’t understand why you’re reversing the standard aviation placement of numerator and denominator, and I would urge you to adopt that standard.
Your appeal for us to share our [malfunction or accident] stories with a larger audience (“Gearing Up” by Executive Director Ed Scott, April Parachutist) not only resonates, it makes sense.
I have always made a point to get a DZ safety briefing about local hazards like power lines, highways, water hazards and irritable farmers whenever going to a new place
I was a late starter when it came to skydiving. I began at age 37 in 1969 when several of my firefighter buddies and I were watching our 10-inch black-and-white TV in the station and saw a program about skydiving at Skylark Airport in Lake Elsinore, California. “What the heck,” we said.
After college I wound up in an unhealthy relationship. I was depressed and needed to do something about it. One of my coworkers, Ray, had recently started skydiving and was always encouraging people to come to the Ranch in Gardiner, New York, to try it. I was pretty desperate, so I figured, “What the hell?”
Rich Grimm, D-18890, started skydiving in 1980. He has been a competitor and a DZO, but he’s best known for being the creator, facilitator and organizer of epic international boogies in exotic locations.
The National Aeronautic Association selected the four-point 42-way head-down world record as one of its most memorable aviation records of 2018. The skydivers set the record on June 30 over Skydive Chicago in Ottawa, Illinois, surpassing the previous record of 33 set in 2014.
Ink and pencil, based on a photo by Jen Mackinnon
I’m guessing that most readers were impressed by the flaming canopy on the cover of the March Parachutist, but I’m not one of them. It’s hard for me to believe that you’d sanction this kind of lunacy, especially on the cover of the Safety Day issue! But hey, that’s just me.
While reading the March magazine, I noticed that the Collegiates will no longer include classic accuracy. It’s a passing. It made me recall when, a few years ago, the U.S. Army Parachute Team leadership got out of classic. I also remembered when those APT guys set all kinds of accuracy records. At least classic is still pretty strong in Europe.
Today’s fast-paced communication has changed the way we view our world and ourselves. To receive a million views or thousands of followers or thousands of likes seems to be a top priority. And people need to come up with original ideas faster than ever to stay ahead of the pack. But what happens when these ideas or stunts break the law or violate safety policies or jeopardize our sport?
Thank you, Ed Scott, for your “Gearing Up” in April’s Parachutist. We need to report our incidents so we can understand potential problems and deal with them early. Our personal influence on safety can have an overall impact of reducing injuries in the sport. It isn’t the rules; it’s the behaviors. With the fatality rate being less than 1 per 100,000, we need to focus on near misses. Incident reporting increases our opportunity to get ahead of our injuries and fatalities.
In February, I survived a low-altitude canopy collision with another parachutist while skydiving at a busy drop zone in Southern California. We wrapped and came spinning down to crash land on an RV supply parts warehouse. I punched a hole through the roof and was knocked unconscious, yet miraculously, the worst injury I suffered was a badly broken wrist. The other jumper hit a second or two after me and broke two ribs.
Ever since I was young, I’ve been the adventurous type. I constantly seek new experiences and never let “no” get in the way. I’ve never had the mentality of letting life come to me; I’ve always chased it. I’d see something I wanted to try and go after it, whether it be acting in movies (I was in two), doing stand-up comedy or excelling in my career.
(More articles being added every day!)
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