Forums: Community: Blue Skies - In Memory Of:
Dennis Anderson ~ 8/11/10

 

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airtwardo  (D License)

Aug 11, 2010, 11:47 AM
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Dennis Anderson ~ 8/11/10 Can't Post

It saddens me to report long time skydiver Dennis Anderson was killed this morning in a motorcycle accident while on his way to Spaceland where he worked as an Instructor, Rigger and Pilot.

I spent last week with Dennis jumping at EAA's AirVenture Oshkosh. He was an EAA member for over 35 years and jumped with the Liberty Parachute Team at the show the past two.

Dennis was a friend, mentor and long time skydiver who will be missed.

Our sport is lesser without him.

Go easy friend...Blues.
Attachments: Dennis 2010 AirVenture.jpg (84.0 KB)


gemini  (D 24349)

Aug 11, 2010, 11:52 AM
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Re: [airtwardo] Dennis Anderson ~ 8/11/10 [In reply to] Can't Post

Very sad day today. Rest in peace Dennis. You will be missed.


Ketia0  (B 33800)

Aug 11, 2010, 1:24 PM
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Re: [airtwardo] Dennis Anderson ~ 8/11/10 [In reply to] Can't Post

Forever Blue Skies Dennis. You will be missed. I wont forget the jumps we did together. Unsure


buff  (D 30567)

Aug 11, 2010, 1:39 PM
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Re: [airtwardo] Dennis Anderson ~ 8/11/10 [In reply to] Can't Post

I hear Dennis' name at least twice a week at our DZ and Superbudman is still jumping a Racer that Dennis sold him. The legend is that Jesus bought it new and passed it on to Dennis along with a camera helmet that you had to hand crank the 35mm film thru.

Blue Skies Dennis and fly free forever.


Usetawuz  (D 2747)

Aug 11, 2010, 3:01 PM
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Re: [airtwardo] Dennis Anderson ~ 8/11/10 [In reply to] Can't Post

This is a very sad loss for the sport in general and Spaceland in particular! My heart-felt condolences to his Family and friends.


bclark  (D 22626)

Aug 11, 2010, 3:24 PM
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Re: [airtwardo] Dennis Anderson ~ 8/11/10 [In reply to] Can't Post

Dennis was a truly rare human being. In my time working alongside him I was impressed most by his ability to seemingly ignore all the B.S. and keep a smile on his face. I can count the number of times I ever saw him angry on one hand. At work I was always amazed by Dennis. At 60+ this guy would put most of us youngsters to shame. He would never shy away from a heavy tandem, or that basketcase AFF student that no one else wanted to work with.

Some of my best memories of Dennis were:

His stories. There were hundreds of them. And no matter how many time he told the same story I never (really) got tired of listening to them.

Every morning he would pick up the DZ mail and bring it into the office and say, "Oh Boy, the Mail's Here!"

We did some really fun demos together. He was an awesome Santa Claus. I have attached a few pictures.

He was never afraid to go out and shoot practice approaches in actual IMC with me. He would take me out in his T-Craft and let me pound it into the earth. I remember him asking me if I wanted to spin in the Taylorcraft. I said "sure". He then instructed me to climb up to 5000 ft directly over the LZ so he could keep up his "crazy old guy" image. He showed me how you had to hold the T-craft in a deep stall or it would recover from the spin on it's own.

This guy had 40+ years of jumping under his belt and still loved it. He was one of the few people left these days who would help you out just because and never complain.

My condolences to his family, and to my friends at Spaceland. Dennis is definitely gonna be missed.
Attachments: deerparkhsdemo.jpg (99.3 KB)
  moodygdemo.jpg (57.4 KB)
  needvillehsdemo.jpg (71.2 KB)


airtwardo  (D License)

Aug 11, 2010, 3:52 PM
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Re: [gemini] Dennis Anderson ~ 8/11/10 [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Very sad day today. Rest in peace Dennis. You will be missed.


Last night I was burning team member video & photograph DVD's of our week at Oshkosh, I spoke with Dennis on the phone to tell him I'd bring it down this weekend.

I keep looking at it in disbelief...

I picked Dennis up at the Milwaukee airport and all he did was talk airplanes and skydiving non-stop for the hour & a half until we got there, he was in his element and it was truly an inspiration to be around him in that setting.

I've known him for many years but it wasn't until a couple years ago he asked one night over a beer what he would need to do to get a jump during the EAA airshow...he's been an active member 1/2 his life and has attended the convention on numerous occasions.

I just laughed, told him he was 'on' and that I'd just been WAITING for him to ask.

Last year Dennis borrowed his son's blue camera helmet to record the event, he was a bit distressed when we told him he would have to 'tape' it with white because the team all wears white helmets, and we try to match up because you never know when someone might take YOUR picture for publication...it's a professionalism thing.

He taped it and sure enough, HIS photo while landing was featured in this years AirVenture program, the same pic of him was on the recent Blue Skies magazine..."SEE I told ya I needed to tape that helmet" he said when he saw the program those few days ago.

1/2 way through the show week this year, I was delayed doing a press interview and didn't get back to the house we use off site until everything used that day had been repacked for the next performance.

When I finally pulled up, Dennis handed me a beer and my demo rig all packed up sayin' 'Here ya go kid I got ya covered'

The whole team was standing around us grinning as I took the rig from him, grabbed the pilotchute and tossed the container out in the yard to RE-pack it myself. Everybody knows I never jump a demo with someone else's pack job...the laughter was almost deafening.

He was laughing the hardest, "I JUST LOST A BET YOU ASSHOLE!"

Dennis was one of those precious few people that you meet in life and never forget, someone ya never tire of being around.

I feel a real hole inside right now and can't imagine what his family must be going through.

It has been a pleasure to know him and truly my honor to call him a friend.

Peace.
Attachments: Dennis 1.jpg (84.0 KB)
  Dennis 2a.jpg (91.2 KB)
  Dennis 3a.jpg (88.6 KB)
  Dennis 4a.jpg (80.0 KB)
  Team Liberty AirVenture 2010.jpg (81.9 KB)


RoryJ  (D 28873)

Aug 11, 2010, 5:17 PM
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Re: Dennis Anderson ~ 8/11/10 [In reply to] Can't Post

I have had the distinct pleasure of working with Dennis for almost the last year and a half at Spaceland up in the loft. I came in a pretty green rigger and he helped me get mildly less green and shared many, many stories (many, many times over) and I just cannot believe that I will not get to hear them again.

He never stopped moving and all of his students loved him. I mean, hell, how could you not love a crazy, old man with a twirly moustache and a sock in his Pro-Tec.

Words cannot express the loss to his family, the sport and to the jumpers out there that cannot learn so much from him.

At least I have my memories from working up in our very well temperature-controlled home seven days a week.

BSBD, Dennis.


Snowwhite

Aug 11, 2010, 8:23 PM
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Re: [airtwardo] Dennis Anderson ~ 8/11/10 [In reply to] Can't Post

We were at the EAA in Oshkosh this last month and Dean saw the pic you mentioned in the book. He turned to me and said "I gotta find him and get his autograph on this picture"Unsure

I am so sorry to hear of his passing.

Beth


tbellopa-c  (D 28953)

Aug 11, 2010, 11:06 PM
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Re: [gemini] Dennis Anderson ~ 8/11/10 [In reply to] Can't Post

Family, friends and Staff at Skydive Spaceland.

We at SDH were truly shocked to here of the death of Dennis. Many of our staff also grieves from previously working with him in an operational status out of state. He is loved by many and is always known for his quotes, mustache, sock and smile. He is a great lover of the sky and will truly be missed.
From your friends' up north, please know our best wishes are with you, the family and your staff during these times of sorrow. SDH


MrHixxx  (D 24144)

Aug 12, 2010, 12:47 AM
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Re: [airtwardo] Dennis Anderson ~ 8/11/10 [In reply to] Can't Post

I had the pleasure of learning from Dennis at Tommy's rigging course years ago and enjoying some of his kickass deer jerky. It was also nice to see him at Couchfreaks year after year...

I just can't fathom loss anymore. It just seems bizarre and cruel to lose a personality like his. Let the tears flow and hope the pain goes...

-Hixxx


skydived19006  (D 19006)

Aug 12, 2010, 5:49 AM
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Re: [airtwardo] Dennis Anderson ~ 8/11/10 [In reply to] Can't Post

Damian Hrdlicka wrote:
"I will always remember every time I asked DA to do something the answer was alway SURE!!! We did some crazy shit, me and that boy. I love him and miss him."

Damian wrote that on facebook. When I read it I could almost literally here Dennis' voice saying "SURE!!!"


Kittyblood  (D 26354)

Aug 12, 2010, 6:22 AM
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Re: [gemini] Dennis Anderson ~ 8/11/10 [In reply to] Can't Post

IT is a sad day when a good friends dies. Dennis was always a happy smiling face and a great person to talk to. HE will be missed.


regulator  (A 53175)

Aug 12, 2010, 7:15 AM
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Re: [Kittyblood] Dennis Anderson ~ 8/11/10 [In reply to] Can't Post

Man this straight up sucks ass. Dennis was one of the good guys. No matter how green you were he always took time to make you feel better with a smile. I will remember my jumps with you like they were yesterday. Rest in peace my friend.


jumpwally  (D License)

Aug 12, 2010, 9:41 AM
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Re: [tbellopa-c] Dennis Anderson ~ 8/11/10 [In reply to] Can't Post

whats the story on the sock ? Share it please...Laugh


skydived19006  (D 19006)

Aug 12, 2010, 9:52 AM
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Re: [jumpwally] Dennis Anderson ~ 8/11/10 [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
whats the story on the sock ? Share it please...Laugh

I don't really think that it's much of a story really. He stored his goggles in the sock, then stored the sock in his Protec. I never asked him about it, but guessed that it was something he did one day, then just kept doing.


wmw999  (D 6296)

Aug 12, 2010, 9:55 AM
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Re: [skydived19006] Dennis Anderson ~ 8/11/10 [In reply to] Can't Post

As a by-the-by, he posted (very) occasionally as DENNISA.

Wendy P.


nbblood  (D 26355)

Aug 12, 2010, 2:31 PM
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Re: [skydived19006] Dennis Anderson ~ 8/11/10 [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
In reply to:
whats the story on the sock ? Share it please...Laugh

I don't really think that it's much of a story really. He stored his goggles in the sock, then stored the sock in his Protec. I never asked him about it, but guessed that it was something he did one day, then just kept doing.

Also, he'd loop the sock through the holes in his ProTec, so in freefall it looked kind of like rabbit ears. See the picture here from one of the other threads.

Usually right after he'd put his helmet on with the sock dangling out, he'd look at the student and say, "and remember, we take our jobs seriously."

That usually come a little while after he'd tell them every night he'd drink a glass of warm milk and a viagra. The milk would help him sleep and the viagra would keep him from rolling out of bed.

Or he'd tell the student they could undo their seatbelt because it was hard to skydive with an airplane strapped to their ass.

I'll miss that guy!
Attachments: dennis2.jpg (58.5 KB)


skyhussy  (D 25431)

Aug 12, 2010, 4:37 PM
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Re: [nbblood] Dennis Anderson ~ 8/11/10 [In reply to] Can't Post

I did my very first AFF Jump with Dennis at Skydivde Greensburg about 7 years ago. He was a great teacher and AFF partner, patient and fun to jump with.

Thanks, Dennis, I couldn't have done it without you!

Blue skies,
Samantha


Bolas  (D License)

Aug 12, 2010, 4:44 PM
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Re: [nbblood] Dennis Anderson ~ 8/11/10 [In reply to] Can't Post

So all the sentiments stay together:



dqpacker



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Aug 11, 2010, 2:43 PM

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Dennis Anderson

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I'm sad to report, Dennis Anderson passed away this morning in a motorcycle accident.
Dennis was a rigger, pilot, AFF-I, Tandem-I, and more.
Dennis worked all over the country jumping, he will be missed by many.
My thoughts go out to his wife, kids, and his family.

We always called you old man but you left us way too soon.
Peace Brother
DQ



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WHAT WOULD WAGAR DO!

Attachments: dennis.jpg (72.5 KB) http://www.dropzone.com/...t;postatt_id=123973;
dennis2.jpg (58.5 KB) http://www.dropzone.com/...t;postatt_id=123974;




wmw999



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Aug 11, 2010, 2:47 PM

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Re: [dqpacker] Dennis Anderson [In reply to]

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Great pictures, and what a sad reason to post them.

Wendy P.



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There is nothing more dangerous than breaking a basic safety rule and getting away with it. It removes fear of the consequences and builds false confidence. (tbrown)




askir



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Aug 11, 2010, 3:38 PM

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Re: [wmw999] Dennis Anderson [In reply to]

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I dealt with Dennis on a rigging level and he was always professional and it was obvious he loved everything he did....there are fewer and fewer people like him around...
This sucks.



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LIFE IS LIKE A CIGARETTE, YOU CAN SIT THERE AND WATCH IT BURN AWAY OR YOU CAN SMOKE THAT BITCH TO THE FILTER





kameraflyr



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Aug 11, 2010, 4:08 PM

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Re: [dqpacker] Dennis Anderson [In reply to]

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Just met Dennis this last weekend and he was clearly an inspiring guy with lots of posative energy. Please pass on my condolances to all the family and friends at Spaceland.





skydived19006



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Aug 11, 2010, 4:18 PM

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Re: [dqpacker] Dennis Anderson [In reply to]

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Dennis had been jumping mainly in Texas for the last few years since he "retired." He was from Kansas and had a great influence on skydiving in the mid west. He was one of the early tandem IEs, and trained a whole lot of TIs over the years. The guy was a dynamo, he could work circles around folks a third his age!

One funny story regarding Dennis; he did a demo years ago and jumped a tandem rig with a pig in the student harness. The pig went on the fire for the party later. A year or two after the jump I got a picture in an email ezime from Australia.

Always easy to find Dennis in a formation with the sock in his Protec.

Martin



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Theory and reality are the same, in theory. In reality theyre not.

Air Capital Drop Zone, Wichita Kansas





nbblood




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Aug 11, 2010, 5:04 PM

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Re: [skydived19006] Dennis Anderson [In reply to]

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In Reply To
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Dennis had been jumping mainly in Texas for the last few years since he "retired." He was from Kansas and had a great influence on skydiving in the mid west. He was one of the early tandem IEs, and trained a whole lot of TIs over the years. The guy was a dynamo, he could work circles around folks a third his age!

One funny story regarding Dennis; he did a demo years ago and jumped a tandem rig with a pig in the student harness. The pig went on the fire for the party later. A year or two after the jump I got a picture in an email ezime from Australia.

Always easy to find Dennis in a formation with the sock in his Protec.

Martin

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I am one of the TIs he trained. He also helped me immensely in rigging and AFF instruction. And that picture of the tandem with the pig was still on the wall at Spaceland in the instructor room last time I was there.

This is a sad, sad day. I will miss him. He was truly a terrific guy!



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Blues,
Nathan

If you wait 'til the last minute, it'll only take you a minute.




dqpacker



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Aug 11, 2010, 5:05 PM

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Re: [skydived19006] Dennis Anderson [In reply to]

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When ever you asked him about it his answer was always-
"It was fun, but the pig didn't arch for shit."



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WHAT WOULD WAGAR DO!

Attachments: dennisandpig.jpg (21.8 KB) http://www.dropzone.com/...t;postatt_id=123978;




jdthomas



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Aug 11, 2010, 5:21 PM

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Re: [dqpacker] Dennis Anderson [In reply to]

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Dennis was an awsome guy, it hurts to hear this news.
Dennis was always to be found with a smile on his face. he loved to skydive, loved to teach skydiving and just loved everything avation.
I was lucky enough to jump with him on many occassions and at many DZ's, Dennis taught my tandem course and I had a great time learning from him.
I think back to his storys and one of them sticks out and that was when he went to school at Pitt State (Pittsburg, Ks) he and Jim Sours formed a skydive club with the school, got some cash and spent it all on beer and jumps. I guess the school found out about the beer and that was the end of that club, he just smiled as he told the story.
little Joe





zuziel



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Aug 11, 2010, 5:51 PM

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Re: [dqpacker] Dennis Anderson [In reply to]

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I always enjoyed talking with Dennis. He could tell a story better than anyone I have known. The world is less interesting without him.





wildfan75



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Aug 11, 2010, 10:57 PM

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Re: [dqpacker] Dennis Anderson [In reply to]

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My thoughts are with Spaceland and the rest of Dennis's family this evening.

When I was in Spaceland in May, I had the honor of being introduced to Dennis. It was a rather brief introduction, but I remember him for two reasons.

The first, that moustache.

The second, there seemed to be some sort of energy field that followed him. I couldn't help but notice when he was in the room, in the plane, in the loading area...

BSBD, Dennis.



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"Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, jag bomb in one hand, a smoke in the other, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming 'WOO HOO what a ride!'"





QTPi



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Aug 12, 2010, 12:25 AM

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Re: [dqpacker] Dennis Anderson [In reply to]

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Thanks for all you contributed to your skydiving family Dennis. We will miss you.
BSBD,
Burbles



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--
A mind that is stretched by a new experience can never go back to its old dimensions. -Oliver Wendel Holmes




Channman



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Aug 12, 2010, 10:05 AM

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Re: [dqpacker] Dennis Anderson [In reply to]

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Dennis my brother, I've always enjoyed our talks. I'm going to miss you, you brought a great deal of joy to my life. Your laugh and smile will be missed, but your friendship and memory I will carry with me through out my remaining years.


Bolas  (D License)

Aug 12, 2010, 4:47 PM
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Re: [Bolas] Dennis Anderson ~ 8/11/10 [In reply to] Can't Post

So all the sentiments stay together:


lkealey




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Aug 11, 2010, 2:43 PM

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Dennis Anderson

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We lost Dennis Anderson this morning. He died on his motorcycle, on his way to work. Some idiot pulled out right in front of him, trying to cross 288. He t-boned the car. Died at the scene.

Dennis was one of those very special people, I have known him since I started skydiving six years ago. He was a mentor to me. He helped me rig my first demo flag.

He just came back from Oshkosh, got to jump every day, had a great time.

He was one of those people who was always happy, always had something nice to day. He would do anything for anybody - just because. I can't think of anyone who didn't like and respect him. I am sorry, this is just so hard to write, so hard to believe.

On Sunday, we had a cutaway, I was out there when we found the parachute, the freebag was was somewhere in a wheat field - 4 or 5 feet high, very hard to find. It was getting late, we couldn't find it.

The next morning, Dennis came to me, he wanted to know where to look, so I told him where we found the parachute and where to look for the freebag. He also wanted to know how to get out there on the four-wheeler - it was a couple of miles. He went out on the four-wheeler, couldn't find it, then he took the cessna (172) up to look for it from the air. Took him about 3 hours or so, but he found it. He didn't get anything out of it. He probably paid for he cessna time himself - he loved to fly, he loved to jump, he loved being a rigger - I am very particular and he is one of the few people I trust to work on my canopies or repack my reserve.

He did the tandem for my wife, he really made a difference for her, but he was always that way.

I am sorry for rambling, but there are just so many good things to say about Dennis, and I can't think of anything bad. I will miss him dearly, Spaceland will just not be the same without him.

I am not a bg fan of Shiner Bock, but that is what Dennis liked - I bought him a case once or twice for a cutaway (his reserve repack saved my life) and fixing a bad lineset form the factory.

I am going to have a Shiner tonight, and burn a candle.

He had such a positive affect on so many people. I need not worry about him finding peace in what lies beyond, I know he will - and he will make it a better place.

Blue Skies My Friend, you will always be remembered

CrazyLarry




wmw999

PM

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Aug 11, 2010, 2:48 PM

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Re: [lkealey] Dennis Anderson [In reply to]

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This sucks. Really sucks. I just heard the news, and now I have confirmation.

Rest easy, Dennis. It was too soon. You were living your dream.

Wendy P.



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There is nothing more dangerous than breaking a basic safety rule and getting away with it. It removes fear of the consequences and builds false confidence. (tbrown)




mrmedic



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Aug 11, 2010, 9:12 PM

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Re: [wmw999] Dennis Anderson [In reply to]

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This is.. terrible. Sad. Too many ways to describe it. 2nd good friend I've lost in a week because of the SAME THING! Makes me sick. Sad. Just can't believe it. Don't want to believe it.



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CYA!....up there




snofun




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Aug 12, 2010, 1:58 AM

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Re: [lkealey] Dennis Anderson [In reply to]

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Thank you for writing about Dennis. I met him in 1980 and am glad for finding a great person and friend. To remember him, treat others as he did. A smile, can do, got it done, where's the beer. Dennis taught me tandem and how to be a better skydiver and to enjoy life. He will be missed greatly.





scaryshari



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Aug 12, 2010, 2:00 AM

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Re: [lkealey] Dennis Anderson [In reply to]

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Such a kind/funny, as well as a genuinely good man
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In Reply To
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. My heart goes out to his family/Spaceland Family as you all find your way through the pain of this terrible loss.

Blue Skies forever.

Scary Shari


KurtJ

Aug 12, 2010, 6:51 PM
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Re: [airtwardo] Dennis Anderson ~ 8/11/10 [In reply to] Can't Post

Funeral Services will be held on Monday August 16 at 7 p.m. at Froberg Funeral Home in Alvin, TX.

A celebration of his life is planned for Thursday, August 19 at 10:30am at the First Presbyterian Church in McPherson, KS.


I had the privilege to jump with my Uncle Dennis and grow up around all of his planes, parachutes & many friends in the skydiving community. He really did always have a smile on his face and never turned down a free beer.

A buddy & I were on our way to Wichita in '91 when we drove right into the Andover tornado. We survived, but it wasn't pretty. I knew we had a safe haven in Derby where Dennis & his family lived at the time, and when he answered the door all he said was, "You look like you need a beer!" - Boy did I ever.

And my first inkling of how many lives he would touch was when we were flying my Grandpa's Mooney down to Florida. Somewhere over Georgia I think, he was talking on the radio when someone interrupted and said, "That sounds like Dennis Anderson!" Are you kidding me? We are in the middle of nowhere, and somebody knew his voice!


I've been telling everyone within earshot that if you are on the road, there are motorcycles on the road with you. It doesn't matter if you are on your bicycle or on a bus, motorcycles are everywhere. Look out for them. Their life depends on YOU paying attention to the road, not to your phone, that last text message, the kids in the backseat or the radio.

Being a family member affected by this and a rider as well, it's tough interpreting my feelings right now. Sadness that such a good man has passed; sorrow for my family; anger for the senselessness of it all; helplessness for not being there... But if Dennis' passing makes you stop and think - even for a minute - the next time you're out on the road, then maybe I'll feel a sense of hope as well.

God Bless You all for your kind words of encouragement and especially for the prayers. I know his family appreciates everything you do.



-- Blue Skies forever --
Attachments: DSC00030a.jpg (67.4 KB)


rmarshall234  (D 18793)

Aug 12, 2010, 7:03 PM
Post #23 of 88 (18887 views)
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Re: [airtwardo] Dennis Anderson ~ 8/11/10 [In reply to] Can't Post

Clearly, someone I would have liked and admired. Ride-on brother..


airtwardo  (D License)

Aug 12, 2010, 10:02 PM
Post #24 of 88 (18144 views)
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Re: [KurtJ] Dennis Anderson ~ 8/11/10 [In reply to] Can't Post

I can't even begin to imagine the number of people's lives your uncle affected in a positive way.

I heard this story from a good friend of mine last night when we were reminiscing~

20something years ago my friend was 14 years old and being the basic Midwest airport bum, hanging around doing odd jobs.

He had just helped with a sailplane launch and was walking back along the runway when he hears a 182 chirp a landing behind him, he said he stuck out his thumb as if hitch hiking, and the Cessna slammed on the brakes.

"Where ya goin' kid?" the pilot asked.

"I don't care just wanna go for a ride"

"SURE...Hop in let's go"

The pilot was Dennis and the two of them flew off for lunch at another airport!

All these years later my buddy is now an aircraft builder, a hardcore skydiver and a damn good pilot...he's partners with Dennis in the T-Craft.

CoolCool


snofun  (D 9411)

Aug 12, 2010, 11:36 PM
Post #25 of 88 (18124 views)
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Re: [skydived19006] Dennis Anderson ~ 8/11/10 [In reply to] Can't Post

When Dennis got his first ProTec helmet, he found a grreat place to put his sock that held his goggles. And a new way to amuse students and other divers. I will try to get the Taco Dive video online to show the proper form. Seeing his sock ears sticking up and that mustache flowing in the breeze is one of many great memories.


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