skydiving

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Skydiving Instructor Killed Self During Tandem Jump

Student landed safely after Brett Bickford fell from loosened harness

(Newser) - A skydiving instructor who fell to his death during a tandem jump in Maine in September intentionally loosened his harness in what authorities now say was a suicide. Brett Bickford, an instructor at Skydive New England for 10 years, was doing a tandem jump with a student in Lebanon on... More »

Sergeant Convicted in Wild Case of Parachute Sabotage

Emile Cilliers wanted to start new life with lover, prosecution alleged

(Newser) - Victoria Cilliers, an experienced parachuting instructor, knew as soon as she jumped during what was supposed to be a celebratory skydiving trip with her husband in 2015 that something was not right. "The lines were twisted. I was spinning," she testified in court in London, where a jury... More »

Skydiving Tragedy: 'He Hit the Roof Pretty Hard'

Unidentified man killed after crashing into home in Perris, Calif.

(Newser) - A skydiver was killed after he slammed into the roof of a California home Monday afternoon after it appeared his main parachute didn't open, KABC reports. "He hit the roof pretty hard," a witness says, adding that the unidentified man's orange emergency chute, which didn't... More »

Skydiving Santa, Elf on Shelf Crash-Land on Florida Beach

They slammed into tree and light pole during charity event, but both are OK

(Newser) - A skydiving Santa looking to make a grand entrance while taking an Elf on the Shelf to a 9-year-old girl crashed into a tree and light pole before hitting a Florida beach and breaking his leg, the AP reports. News outlets say George Krokus was dressed as Santa Claus during... More »

Skydiver Told Wife He Wasn't Going to Pull Cord

Costansa Litellini was 'moments too late' to save her husband

(Newser) - Costansa Litellini ran into Florida's Skydive DeLand on Tuesday begging them not to let her husband go up in a plane, the Orlando Sentinel reports. But the plane, with 27-year-old Capotorto Vitantonio inside, had already taken off. Vitantonio's body was found face down in a field a short... More »

Skydiver Makes Unexpected Landing in New Jersey

Rescue crews had to help skydiver out of tree

(Newser) - Rescue crews in New Jersey freed a skydiver who got stuck in a tree and was dangling 70 feet above the ground, the AP reports. Emergency crews in Gloucester County got a call around 5pm Tuesday saying the skydiver had crashed into the trees in Monroe Township. Per NJ.com... More »

She Survived 3.5K-Foot Fall, Just Won $760K Over It

Texas teen Makenzie Wethington says parachute malfunctioned

(Newser) - A Texas girl whose 16th birthday present almost killed her has been awarded $760,000—more than $200 for each of the approximately 3,500 feet she plunged after her parachute malfunctioned. Makenzie Wethington, now 19, suffered internal injuries as well as a broken pelvis, lumbar spine, and shoulder blade... More »

In Fatal Tandem Jump, an Issue With the Teacher

FAA is still investigating deaths of Yong Kwon, Tyler Turner

(Newser) - The director of an organization that certifies skydivers said Thursday that the instructor who led a tandem jump in Northern California that turned fatal didn't have the required advanced parachuting certificate, the AP reports. The Federal Aviation Administration requires tandem-jump instructors to receive training and a certificate from the... More »

2 Skydivers Killed When Chutes Fail to Open

'It looks like ... something may have gone out of sequence'

(Newser) - Two skydivers were killed Saturday during a tandem jump in northern California, reports the AP . Their bodies were found in a Lodi-area vineyard after someone reported that the skydivers hit the ground without an open parachute, San Joaquin County Sheriff's Deputy Les Garcia said. It appeared the parachute did... More »

Skydiver Is First to Jump Without a Chute

Luke Aikens jumps, lands in a net on live television

(Newser) - A 42-year-old skydiver with more than 18,000 jumps made history when he became the first person to leap without a parachute and land in a net instead. After a two-minute freefall, Luke Aikins landed dead center in the 100-by-100-foot net Saturday at the Big Sky movie ranch on the... More »

Skydiver to Jump From 25K Feet With No Chute

Luke Aikins' stunt will be broadcast live on Fox Saturday

(Newser) - An hour-long live TV special on Fox Saturday will lead up to two holding-your-breath minutes in which a veteran skydiver will leap out of a plane at 25,000 feet (no biggie) without something one usually needs for such a jump (kind of a biggie): a parachute. Per the AP... More »

Skydiving Student Found Dead With 'No Harness'

'She came completely out of whatever and dropped to the ground'

(Newser) - Sheralynn Neff took part in at least five skydives over the weekend, so her last on Sunday should have been routine, reports the Hutchinson News . Instead, the 26-year-old's parachute landed without her. Crews in Cushing, Okla., searched for 16 hours before discovering the body of the Kansas woman—whom... More »

5 Killed in Hawaii Skydiving Plane Crash

Cessna burst into flames just after takeoff

(Newser) - Five people died in Hawaii Monday morning when a skydiving tour ended in disaster. A Federal Aviation Administration spokesman tells NBC that the single-engine Cessna 182, carrying two skydivers, two tandem instructors, and the pilot, crashed into a field shortly after taking off from Kauai's Port Allen airport. Four... More »

Ex-Marine Dies in Unexplained Parachuting Accident

James Stremmel had jumped more than 1,800 times

(Newser) - A former Marine died Saturday in a tragic and still-unexplained parachuting accident in North Carolina, WRAL reports. James Stremmel was diving for the second or third time that day when his parachute apparently gave him trouble: "He was setting up his parachute; he was setting up for landing and... More »

Woman Turns 100 With Skydive, Sharkdive

Georgina first jumped out of a plane at 92

(Newser) - What better way to mark your long life than by risking its end? Celebrating her 100th birthday with a parachute jump is not enough for South African Georgina Harwood, who plans to make her centenary even more exciting by doing a shark cage dive tomorrow. Her birthday skydive was a... More »

Skydivers Cheat Death With Early Jump

13 escape just moments before plane crashes into lake

(Newser) - They went out to skydive for fun and ended up leaping for their lives. The pilot and all 12 skydivers on a light plane escaped without serious injury after the aircraft suffered engine failure and crashed into a lake in New Zealand today, the BBC reports. Officials say the plane... More »

Instructor, Student Killed in Skydiving Accident

Pair apparently hit building near Cape Cod Airfield

(Newser) - The Federal Aviation Administration and local authorities are probing the deaths of two skydivers yesterday evening. The instructor and student, both adult males, were found next to a garage across the street from the Cape Cod Airfield, reports NECN . "We responded to the scene and we observed two people—... More »

George Bush Skydives for 90th Birthday

Keeps promise he made 5 years ago

(Newser) - It wasn't that long ago that George HW Bush was thought to be on death's door at the hospital . Today, though, he marked his 90th birthday in style—by skydiving, reports CNN . Bush jumped out of a helicopter tethered to a retired member of the Army's Golden... More »

3 Jump to Safety Before Plane Crash Kills 8

Crash is Finland's worst air disaster in decades

(Newser) - Three people, including the pilot, managed to jump to safety using parachutes when a plane carrying skydivers experienced trouble over western Finland; another eight were killed when the aircraft crashed and caught fire, the BBC reports. Witnesses saw the three jump from the American-made Comp Air 8 light utility aircraft... More »

Skydiver Killed During World Record Attempt

Parachute failed during 222-person jump

(Newser) - Another attempt to smash a skydiving world record has ended in tragedy. One of 222 skydivers from 28 countries died as the team attempted to free-fall from 18,000 feet and come together in two formations before pulling their parachutes, reports the Arizona Republic . The woman, a 46-year-old from... More »

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