How Skydiving Changed My Life

How Skydiving Changed My Life - Tracey Sullivan


by Tracey Sullivan | B-35331 | Houston, Texas

When someone asks me, “Why?” I tell them that there is so much in life to experience that the greater question is, “Why not?” more »

How Skydiving Changed My Life - Doug Garr


by Doug Garr | D-2791 | New York, New York

It was April 12, 1969. I had turned 20 the previous week and found myself hanging from the strut of a Cessna 206. A sort-of-nerdy guy with horn-rimmed glasses who lived down the hall in my dorm had made several skydives. Though I kept oversleeping and exhaling with relief when bad weather scrubbed my planned jumping weekends, I figured if he could do it, I could. Also, as a sophomore journalism major, I thought it was a good story for my college newspaper. more »

How Skydiving Changed My Life - Mike Engel


by Michael Engel | C-38710 | Middle Island, New York

In June 2000, I lost my brother in a motorcycle accident. Shortly thereafter, my family and I learned that he had made a tandem skydive the year before. We all wondered how he had felt when he made his jump. So the following year, my father paid for a tandem skydive for my youngest brother and me for our birthdays. more »

How Skydiving Changed My Life - Hugh Roderick


by Hugh Roderick | USPA #149698 | Quincy, Illinois

I’ve always loved everything to do with aviation and have always wanted to be around flying ever since my dad first took me up as a toddler. As a 15-year-old working part-time at a grocery store in South Africa, I started taking flying lessons hoping to follow my dreams of a career in aviation. Shortly after starting lessons, the United States put an oil embargo on South Africa, and flying lessons went from 12 bucks an hour to $48. This put lessons out of reach for me, since I was still going to high school and working a few hours a week. I later saw a film clip on parachuting and thought, “If I can’t fly planes, I could jump out of them and would at least be around aircraft and the smell of avgas.” more »

How Skydiving Changed My Life - Darryld Light


by Darryld Light | C-37668 | Miami, Florida

After my early experiences with the skydiving community, I would never have thought I’d get to the 100-jump mark. But I recently made my 5,000th jump at Skydive Perris in California. Being such a significant jump, you would think it would have been a big-way or with an exclusive group, but it was not. It was a 3-way with two relatively low-time jumpers: a local jumper with 80 jumps and a guest to Perris with 300 jumps. more »

How Skydiving Changed My Life - Sofie Geckler


by Sofie Geckler | C-37668 | Miami, Florida

I must have been 25 years old the first time I was offered a chance to skydive. My boyfriend at the time was a master skydiver and a cinematographer; I was an artist, singer-songwriter, carpenter and horse trainer. I remember telling him, “I will never skydive. You have your passions; I have mine. I do not have to do everything you do. I don’t care if you jump holding someone else’s hand as long as we regroup at the end of the day. Have fun.” Besides that, I was just recovering from getting hit by a car as I was crossing a street, and I still had the trauma of the pain on my mind. more »

How Skydiving Changed My Life - Matt Feeser


by Matt Feeser | USPA #213775 | York, Pennsylvania

My journey into the sport of skydiving was a little different than most. Like many people, skydiving was something I always said that I wanted to do, but it seemed to be something I just kept talking about rather than doing. Although for me, skydiving is a bit more difficult than for most people. more »

How Skydiving Changed My Life - Chad Christian


by Chad Christian | B-34226 | Houston, Texas

In August of 2008, I was diagnosed with stage IV non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. The doctors and other medical center staff told me that I had about six months to live and that treatment was not an option. Being the fighter that I am, I told them they were insane and that I would go broke getting treatments before I would allow myself to die. One year later, I was in remission. I felt that life had just flashed before my eyes. I proved, not only to the doctors but to my friends and family, that I had the will to succeed and would do anything in my power to make the most of life. more »

How Skydiving Changed My Life - Kevin Yasuda


by Kevin “Yoshi” Yasuda | D-26770 | Houston, Texas

One of the first things I tell people when they ask me about skydiving is that it goes from being an experience to a hobby to a lifestyle, and those of us who are licensed jumpers can attest to the gravity of that statement (pun intended). more »

How Skydiving Changed My Life - Susie Marshall


by Susie Marshall | B-34172 | Cardiff, California

I had never been interested in skydiving. I have a friend who has skydived for years, but it wasn’t something that was even on my bucket list. I was scared of heights and of jumping out of a perfectly good airplane. I thought, “It might be great for other people but not for me.” more »