Forums: Skydiving: Skydiving History & Trivia:
Ghoulidge

 


debonair  (D 11192)

Nov 8, 2003, 10:26 PM
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Ghoulidge Can't Post

I think it was 1986 - I had travelled very little and made my first skydiving trip to Coolidge for the Thanksgiving Boogie.

I was a little fish from a cessna DZ in a big ocean of Beeches and DC3s. I noticed that lots of people had bizarre tee-shirts like "Skydivers eat their dead" and strange graphics of the grim reaper and other assorted demons.

Around the firepit I heard stories of people "pissing in craters" and learned that for the locals it was almost a tribute to participate in the act. It was also a way to "thumb" their noses at the threat of a black death.

It wasn't until I was on a 13way (immense for me) and it broke off close to 1000' (the standard for them) that I looked down and saw the skull and crossbones on the ground and the words Ghoulidge along the runway. Unless you were low enough to see the details you couldn't tell it said that from altitude.

It wasn't my personal style but I did wear the tee-shirt back home and told some good no shit there I was "war" stories.

Every once in a while I run into Dave Mahoney and give him a bad time about his old beater van with the bleached cow skull mounted on his front bumper.

Those were the days alright. I wouldn't necessarily want them back but they made for some rich memories.


(This post was edited by debonair on Nov 8, 2003, 10:49 PM)


chuteless  (D 41)

Nov 9, 2003, 5:45 AM
Post #2 of 23 (2004 views)
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Re: [debonair] Ghoulidge [In reply to] Can't Post

sometimes people go off in a tangent in a direction that can only be referred to as STUPID and CHILDISH.

They seem to thing they are all rugged John Wayne in disguise....its just a matter of one day they will grow up, and both they and their foolishness will both be forgotten.

My feeling is its just a lack of class and decency and a case where boys think they are ? men?Wink


it certainly isnt showing much respect for others who have died in this sport.Wink


(This post was edited by chuteless on Nov 9, 2003, 5:46 AM)


quatorze  (A 39233)

Nov 9, 2003, 12:45 PM
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Re: [chuteless] Ghoulidge [In reply to] Can't Post

Am I correct in thinking that this forum is a little different then TalkBacK? Easy on the judgement, I for one really enjoy hearing these stories, I refuse to say if what they were doing was right or wrong, but the stories of what happened before I got into this sport are always welcomeWink


chuteless  (D 41)

Nov 10, 2003, 7:23 AM
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Re: [quatorze] Ghoulidge [In reply to] Can't Post

If you happened to read "Parachutist Magazine" last month, you may understand where My remarks come from.

I lost 16 friends onm 1 jump....and I think it tasteless and inconsiderate to do what was described to dishonour someone who died jumping.

People who carry on like that have NO class or respect fo anyone...and certainly dont have any self respect either.

I have taken rigs off two people who bounced...and its a messy anupleasant sight. One you have seen/or done that, maybe you wont think so much of stupid people who trivialize a jumper's death as some kind of joke.

Bill Cole D-41


FrownFrown


base283  (D 15343)

Nov 10, 2003, 8:33 AM
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Re: [chuteless] Ghoulidge [In reply to] Can't Post

Please cut us youngins some slack, You are definately outstanding in your accomplishments. No one could ever view the world through your glasses. sympathy please.
There is no such thing as stupid people if it is you, they were only trying to DEAL with IT. High respect to ya,.
take care,
space


steve1  (D 23640)

Nov 10, 2003, 8:34 AM
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Re: [debonair] Ghoulidge [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Every once in a while I run into Dave Mahoney and give him a bad time about his old beater van with the bleached cow skull mounted on his front bumper.
reply]

I hope Coolidge isn't like that now. I made one jump there last winter, and I fell in love with the place. Dave Mahoney cooked us up some smoked ham and I also met some other cool old timers like Bob Sinclair around the camp fire that night. I've heard some old jumpers say that Dave Mahoney is kind of a legend. Can anyone tell us more about him? I spent quite a bit of time drinking beer with him at Eloy, but I don't know much about him......Steve1


steve1  (D 23640)

Nov 10, 2003, 8:46 AM
Post #7 of 23 (1902 views)
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Re: [chuteless] Ghoulidge [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
.I have taken rigs off two people who bounced...and its a messy anupleasant sight. One you have seen/or done that, maybe you wont think so much of stupid people who trivialize a jumper's death as some kind of joke.

Bill Cole D-41

Bill....I can certainly see your point. Over the years I have had several friends die jumping. Luckily I wasn't there when it happened. I've never seen a jumper go in. I've also joked about this very subject.... Maybe I wouldn't joke about it if I had seen a friend die. And I'd certainly be angry if anyone pissed in their crater.....Steve1


darkwing  (D 4164)

Nov 10, 2003, 9:59 AM
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Re: [chuteless] Ghoulidge [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
....and I think it tasteless and inconsiderate to do what was described to dishonour someone who died jumping

While I have never done it, I have been close to those who performed the "dishonour" you describe and close to those who have been "dishonoured." I disagree with your interpretation of the act. At least in the cases with which I am familiar, I believe that the deceased would have smiled at the act.


chuteless  (D 41)

Nov 10, 2003, 10:43 AM
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Re: [darkwing] Ghoulidge [In reply to] Can't Post

whether they would smile or not can never be proven, and my point is that it is disrepectful to act in such a bizarre manner when it comes to a friend. what do you suppose his wife, mother, father, kids would think of such behaviour?


I doubt in their grief they would approve, and if they wouldnt, why allow a message ever be given them that their fellow jumpers pissed on the spot where they hit/


it is totally uncalled for.


My best friend went into lake Erie and drowned with the other 15. I couldnt disrespect him or any of the others in that way.


as for the earlier post, being young is no excuse for being stupid. we all have our moments of stupidity, but I dont think they should be in disrespect for someone who died.


That same week that we were searching for those 16 jumpers, a young boy (16yr old) asked me if I would take photos of him the next day. He wanted to do one more jump alone and then we would go for pictures.



On that jump, he concentrated so hard on holding a heading, he forgot to pull.
We rolled his mangled body into a blanket...it was impossible to pick him up...he had no bone structure. It wasnt very nice....and I had only met him the day before his death, and I liked him.

If you think that doesnt hurt...you are wrong. I fell apart more than once that week....and still have a hard time dealing with much of it 36 yrs later.

If I had seen anyone piss on where that young lad hit, I would certainly have lost it then and there.


The night before the 16 drowned, my friend, Joe Malarik was in a bar with his girlfriend Barb and another guy. Joe said at the table, that when he died, he would like to drown.

He had fallen into a swimming pool when he was about 5 or 6 yrs old, and he went quickly and peacefully, and he woke up in a recovery room .

He said it was a good way to go, .......


the next day he drowned.

Bill Cole D-41


debonair  (D 11192)

Nov 10, 2003, 5:01 PM
Post #10 of 23 (1844 views)
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Re: [steve1] Ghoulidge [In reply to] Can't Post

I don't think any DZ runs this way any longer. Remember we're talking the mid-80s when safety meetings had nothing to do with safety. My understanding is that Coolidge is well run and all that's left of those "old" days are the "no shit" stories.

Re the content of my original post - it wasn't my cup of tea but it was the way it was. The jumpers at Coolidge during that period chose to be there and knew how things would go if they went in. Many there DID pride themselves on being different than the mainstream jumper population.

I apologize if what I wrote offended anyone.

PS> Please tell Mahoney that Deb from Seattle sends a hug.

In reply to:
I hope Coolidge isn't like that now. I made one jump there last winter, and I fell in love with the place. Dave Mahoney cooked us up some smoked ham and I also met some other cool old timers like Bob Sinclair around the camp fire that night. I've heard some old jumpers say that Dave Mahoney is kind of a legend. Can anyone tell us more about him? I spent quite a bit of time drinking beer with him at Eloy, but I don't know much about him......Steve1


quatorze  (A 39233)

Nov 12, 2003, 8:42 AM
Post #11 of 23 (1768 views)
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Re: [chuteless] Ghoulidge [In reply to] Can't Post

Never did I say it was right, and until I have been witness to these acts she described,I will hold judgement, yes I have lost friends in the sport and I have lost friends in my chosen profession, and yes I agree with proper respect, but I also think that the harshness you used bashing here post is meant for "TalkBack" not here, she was talking about what is skydiving history, to me, and that is the fourm that I thought we were in, to share these stories so that us young "stupid" jumpers could learn


chuteless  (D 41)

Nov 12, 2003, 11:31 AM
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Re: [quatorze] Ghoulidge [In reply to] Can't Post

You may not be young enough or interested enough to remember or know about it, but the ultimate indignity and evil insult that the Nazis could do to the thousands of Jews they killed, was to piss into the side of the pit where the Jews were being buried (sometimes alive).

I do not wish to see skydivers or skydiving equated to that kind of indignity.

Skydiving history is more than that sir, it is parachuting, not showing disrepect for a guy who died taking part in the sport.



Cool


Shell666  (C 1817)

Nov 12, 2003, 12:22 PM
Post #13 of 23 (1740 views)
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Re: [steve1] Ghoulidge [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
I hope Coolidge isn't like that now. I made one jump there last winter, and I fell in love with the place. Dave Mahoney cooked us up some smoked ham and I also met some other cool old timers like Bob Sinclair around the camp fire that night. I've heard some old jumpers say that Dave Mahoney is kind of a legend. Can anyone tell us more about him? I spent quite a bit of time drinking beer with him at Eloy, but I don't know much about him......Steve1

I emailed Mahoney and told him he was a topic of conversation here ... maybe he'll jump in and reply ... if he can figure out what a computer looks like ... Tongue

'Shell


mjosparky  (D 5476)

Nov 12, 2003, 8:35 PM
Post #14 of 23 (1715 views)
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Re: [chuteless] Ghoulidge [In reply to] Can't Post

Bill,
Lighten up. No one said anything about being disrespectful to the dead. They were discussing what happened years ago. You have seen it done, I have seen it done. You don't have to agree with their actions but unless you are a member of their group you have no right to judge. How in the hell do you get for skydiving in AZ to Nazis?
Sparky


(This post was edited by mjosparky on Nov 12, 2003, 8:40 PM)


chuteless  (D 41)

Nov 13, 2003, 6:26 AM
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Re: [mjosparky] Ghoulidge [In reply to] Can't Post

Im not getting from skydiving in AZ to Nazis....I am saying that indecent and disrespectful behaviour isnt good anywhere, and that the Nazis used their pissing on the Jews as the ultimate disrespect. If it was the ultimate disrespect then, its no better now.

Perhaps they dont piss in the crater of a jumper who died now....and thats good, and I hope that is the case. It means someone is growing up and maturing.Unsure


jonstark  (D 8298)

Nov 13, 2003, 6:57 AM
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Re: [chuteless] Ghoulidge [In reply to] Can't Post

There was a suicide at the atlanta DZ in about 78 that was witnessed by many. The victim tracked to the pit and missed by a few feet but left a remarkable crater of a tracking body.

From time to time a few of the jumpers there would quietly go out and scuff their feet in the crater to prevent the grass from growing.

This was not so much out of disrespect for the dead or macho-bravado. It was to remind us all that deaath is real. Sadly this same DZ got a much bigger reminder when Cowboy took the Caravan out of maintenance without it being properly returned to serivce and killed a load. Now after many years and the loss of many friends I'm sure their tune has changed.

I think if you go back in Gulch history and see who was active there during the heyday of Black Death you'll find that many are gone and the rest have matured quite nicely. We all grow up sooner or later.

jon


chuteless  (D 41)

Nov 13, 2003, 7:28 AM
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Re: [jonstark] Ghoulidge [In reply to] Can't Post

Thanks for the good posting. Its nice to have it confirmed that the behaviour that has been under discussion here has stopped.

I just think its a mark of disrespect to piss on the site where a guy/gal was killed, adding a terrible insult to the injury of the family and friends .

Thanks,

Bill Cole D-41Sly


krkeenan  (C 7860)

Nov 13, 2003, 8:48 AM
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Re: [jonstark] Ghoulidge [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
...Cowboy took the Caravan out of maintenance without it being properly returned to serivce and killed a load.
jon

The version I heard was that Cowboy's Caravan went in due to fuel contamination caused by some Colombians that he and Drew Thornton ripped off in a smuggling operation. That was all quite a story in itself.

Kevin K


usedtajump  (D 6813)

Nov 13, 2003, 4:34 PM
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Re: [debonair] Ghoulidge [In reply to] Can't Post

Having attended several boggies at Cooledge in the early and mid 80s, primarily the Halloween boogies, it seemed that the crater tours, the go in stories, etc. were, for the most part, not conducted by anyone who was actually there when any of the events actually happened. Mostly the information was more legend which had embelished every time it was passed down to newer jumpers. Sure contributed to the Halloween atmosphere, though. Damn what great times.WinkWink


jonstark  (D 8298)

Nov 13, 2003, 5:08 PM
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Re: [krkeenan] Ghoulidge [In reply to] Can't Post

The aircraft had been in maintenance for the week and they had found the fuel system contaminated by an unknown source. The a/c was grounded by the maintenance provider and marked clearly that it was not to be flown under any circumstances. Cowboy or one if his representatives went and retrieved the a/c with no return to service. The story I got was they didn't believe there was enough of a problem to ground them as they thought the fuel filters would bypass and allow proper flow even if the system was contaminated. Remember the Caravan was new to everybody, especially those on the bottom of the food chain, Skydive operators.

Anyway... They took the a/c and went down to the DZ and the rest is history. Their source of contamination was 55 gallon drums stored out in the open with the tops flat. They should be tilted if left out in the open so that any rain won't go into the bung when the drums heat up then cool down.

The fuel contamination lesson was not learned by all tho...


usedtajump  (D 6813)

Nov 14, 2003, 6:57 AM
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Re: [jonstark] Ghoulidge [In reply to] Can't Post

I had jumped Cowboy's Caravan at Freak Bros a month before the crash and was very uncomfortable with the way he hung that thing on the prop after liftoff. I thought then that if the engine quit there would be no chance of recovery.

I have always wondered if, when the engine did actually quit, was the aircraft similarly hanging on the prop and if it hadn't been, would the outcome have been different if there had been ample angle of attack for at least partial airspeed recovery.


jonstark  (D 8298)

Nov 14, 2003, 6:40 PM
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Re: [usedtajump] Ghoulidge [In reply to] Can't Post

Their cavalier operating attitude as evidenced by "showing off" was the reason I never jumped the a/c and I was a semi-local!

jon


w4p2  (Student)

Nov 24, 2003, 5:06 PM
Post #23 of 23 (1453 views)
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Re: [chuteless] Ghoulidge [In reply to] Can't Post

Dear Sir

I fully agree with your comments regarding the unrespectfull behavior that has been discussed.
Having worked in number of major disaster scenes I have observed, that in case the recovery efforts over a grisly incident continue for extended periods of time, the peoples involved often resort to very dark humor, in order to maintain their own sanity and capability to work.

However, Resorting to to type of behavior as described when it serves no other purpose than self promotion, is simply poor taste and manifestation of low morals and IQ.

Having said the above, I ask about the lake Erie Incident. I tried to access the Parachutist Magazine
with no success, and I imagine there are other participants to this forum that might have the same problem.

Subject to your judgment I ask if you could either post the article in the history forum or describe the incident under dedicated title to the extent you find appropriate.

Kind Regards: JL



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