A jumper experienced a main-parachute malfunction when the slider remained at the top of the lines after deployment and would not allow the parachute to inflate. He released the main parachute, deployed his reserve and landed safely.
When you want to check out a new main parachute, chances are you’ll make a solo jump, open higher than usual and spend some time flying the new wing to get used to how it handles. Almost everyone who jumps a new main canopy does. After all, it makes sense. It’s a mystery how the new parachute will steer and flare compared to what you are used to, and who wouldn’t want to make a few jumps on it under controlled conditions with plenty of altitude to learn how to fly it?
In 2017, USPA conducted five standardization meetings for all current AFF instructor examiners and tandem instructor examiners, as well as those pursuing an examiner rating or attending purely for educational purposes. This was USPA’s first attempt at hosting the AFF and tandem meetings in one location and condensing the length of each discipline’s meeting to one day instead of two. The meetings went well, but the shorter meetings meant leaving out a lot of valuable information and discussion.
Brought to you by Niklas Daniel and Brianne Thompson of AXIS Flight School at Skydive Arizona in Eloy. Photos by Isaac Hansen. Information about AXIS’ coaching and instructional services is available at axisflightschool.com.
AFF Instructor Cat Brown gives a hand signal to her student at Connecticut Parachutists Inc. in Ellington.
Photo By David Gerstein | D-28242
Acrylic on Canvas
Colleen Mondics | A-56684
Wingsuit training is multi-faceted and requires both freedom and flexibility to change with the rapid development of suit design, competition formats and flying styles.
Bill Jones, D-924, is a legendary skydiver, instructor, drop zone owner, innovator and the patriarch of a large skydiving family. Nearly the entire Jones family jumps: six of his children have made their livings from skydiving, and five of the six still do. At age 86—after actively sport jumping for more than 50 years—Jones still has skydiving goals, proving that this is a sport for life.
I was an adrenaline junkie until I had a severe stroke in 2006. Last year, when I heard about a guy who was raising money to take people with disabilities to a wind tunnel, I was very curious. I didn't think that flying in a wind tunnel was possible for someone as immobile as I am, but I contacted him to see what he thought I could do.
While making a tandem skydive with instructor Iain Guthrie at Pepperell Skydiving Center in Massachusetts, Greicy Hoepers accepts a marriage proposal from Eliseu Matos, B-34200.
Dalton Carvalho | D-25058
On Saturday, July 14, the U.S. Parachute Association became the official Host Country Affiliate of the International Skydiving Museum and Hall of Fame. The USPA Board of Directors made the decision to become a partner of the museum by committing to donate $25,000 per year for the next six years to the museum’s fundraising efforts.
The Parachutist staff has discovered that substantial portions of the interview on which the article “Children of Fallen Heroes—Skydiving Angels” (August Parachutist) was based are not accurate and that at least some of the published photos, including the opening photo, did not depict the correct organization.
Photo by Mark Kirschenbaum/Hypoxic | D-28515
During a Sisters in Skydiving event at Des Moines Skydivers in Winterset, Iowa, new A-license recipient Kari Spethman (purple helmet) enjoys a 4-way with mentors (clockwise from right) Amanda Kubik, Jeanine Bonvin and Julie Kleinwort.
There were lots of smiles and lots of tears the weekend of July 14-15 at Skydive Spaceland–Dallas in Whitewright, Texas, as friends, family and skydivers from across the country came to pay their last respects to Ryan Risberg, D-22873, an amazing personality who passed away in June.
Lenny Botak made a tandem jump a couple of years ago. When he landed, he knew he wanted to skydive some more, but as so often happens, life got in the way.
Dueling DZs—a 6-way formation skydiving competition between California DZs Skydive Elsinore and Skydive Perris—took place on July 21 after a two-year hiatus, and the rivalry was intense!
In July, four students made the first known civilian AFF jumps in Iran.
Sixty skydivers of varying skill levels from four countries headed to Skydive Midwest in Sturtevant, Wisconsin, June 22-24 for the first Sun Path Sequentials vertical skills camp. Participants in the three-day camp split into groups of 3 to 12 flyers to work with one of the 11 rotating organizers, all Sun Path-sponsored athletes.
In July, Southwest Regional Director Jack Pyland—flying a 2,032-square-foot American flag—headed up a group of 12 skydivers who made a demo jump into the annual Kaboom Town fireworks display at Addison Airport just outside of Dallas, Texas.
On July 7, jumper Eric Proctor made a 24,000-foot HALO skydive as a fundraiser for the family of New York Air National Guard Master Sergeant Christopher “Goose” Raguso, who died in action on March 15 when his helicopter went down during a night mission in Iraq.
Registration is now open for the 2019 Drop Zone Operators’ Conference, scheduled for Sunday-Monday, February 3-4, in Dallas, Texas, at the Hyatt Regency Dallas. The conference will take place in conjunction with the USPA Board of Directors meeting February 1-3 and the Parachute Industry Association Symposium February 4-8.
On Friday, June 15, Seven Hills Skydivers of Madison, WI, (which is located in Marshall) held the 4th Annual Freedom Freefall event in conjunction with its Head to the Hills Boogie. The veterans-help organization 4th HOOAH (Helping Out Our American Heroes)—which aims to reduce the number of veteran suicides a day from the current 20—started the event in 2015 to give those suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder a coping mechanism through skydiving. The organization funded tandem skydives, as well as inside and outside video, for 35 veterans this year.
The 2018 edition of the American Revolution Boogie at Skydive Spaceland–Dallas in Whitewright, Texas, is in the books, and judging by the reactions, feedback and word on the street generated by the almost 200 jumpers who attended, it was a resounding success!
The annual Sisters in Skydiving boogie blasted off June 30-July 1 at Skydive Spaceland–Dallas in Whitewright, Texas. For the event titled “SISters in Space,” the star-studded organizer lineup included skydiver and astronaut Mary Ellen Weber, as well as Lacey Breaux, Erin Kruth and Genifer Oliver for belly flyers and Nicole Black and Vanessa Meyer for freeflyers. Weber, a former NASA astronaut and one of only 59 women to have gone into space, detailed her career progression, NASA training and missions (one in 1995 while sending a satellite into orbit and a second in 2000 to the International Space Station). Weber illustrated the importance of mentoring, and the women left feeling inspired to follow their dreams.
At Skydive the Ranch in Gardiner, New York, Laszlo Andacs (blue jumpsuit) celebrates his 10,000th jump with friends (clockwise from right) Tom Falzone (15,000 jumps), Max Cohn (11,000 jumps), Steve Webb (15,000 jumps), John Kieran (13,000 jumps) and Guy Wright (18,000 jumps), who along with camera flyer Igor Shpino (18,000 jumps) have more than 100,000 jumps and 215 years in the sport between them.
There is an old saying about death that states: “They say you die twice. Once when you stop breathing and the second, a bit later on, when somebody mentions your name for the last time.” If that’s the case, Carolyn Clay will never truly die. On Friday, June 29, approximately 350 of Clay’s friends gathered at Virginia Skydiving Center in Petersburg to say a final good-bye to their beloved Queen of Skydiving.
The 2018 USPA Board of Directors summer meeting—the sixth and final meeting of the 2016-2018 board before the fall elections—took place July 13-15. For the board’s first visit to Milwaukee, Skydive Midwest in nearby Sturtevant, Wisconsin, welcomed board members and staff to the drop zone the Thursday before the meeting, and everyone enjoyed the cool, northern temperatures and blue skies before heading into three days of meetings. Compared to recent meetings, agendas were light, allowing the board to explore each topic fully.
(More articles being added every day!)
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