Accident in CT?

Recommended Posts

Here's the article since I couldn't get the link right...

Skydiver Killed After Accident While Landing

ELLINGTON, Conn., 7:31 a.m. EDT July 19, 2002 - There has been another parachuting accident near Ellington.

State police said that a skydiver died at St. Francis Hospital after being injured while attempting to land near Ellington Airport at about noon Thursday.
Ray Lavalee, 34, of Manchester sustained serious injuries after the landing. Authorities said that LaValee victim was an experienced jumper and that his parachute did open.

Witnesses said that he landed hard and tripped.

In May, a 47-year old instructor was killed in an accident at the airport.

Robert Bonadies died after helping a student pull her parachute cord. An investigation showed he was not high enough above the ground when he finally pulled his own rip cord.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites
Here's an e-mail I just got of newspaper article on it.

Skydiver Dies After Landing Goes Awry
Manchester Man, 34, Was Trying High-Speed Maneuver

July 19, 2002
By CHRISTINE DEMPSEY, Courant Staff Writer

ELLINGTON -- A parachutist died early today of injuries suffered when
attempting an advanced maneuver during his landing at Ellington Airport.

Raymond Lavallee, 34, of Manchester, died at St. Francis Hospital and
Medical Center, spokesman Pete Mobilia said. Lavallee was taken there after
the accident Thursday by helicopter from Rockville General Hospital in

It was the second fatal skydiving accident at the airport since early May.

Shortly before noon, Lavallee jumped out of a Twin Otter airplane at 3,000
feet while others stayed in the plane for a jump from a higher altitude. His
canopy opened without a problem, said Ted Ganger of Rocky Hill, an
instructor and one of the skydivers inside the plane.

As he approached the ground, Lavallee performed a "low hook," Ganger said.
In the maneuver, the parachutist swoops downward and speeds along almost
parallel to the ground. The skydiver then touches down lightly, running
along until he or she slows to a halt.

Ganger said that Lavallee appeared to trip as he ran along, falling face

"Initial information reveals that he came down under a full canopy and he
hit the ground extremely hard," said Sgt. Bill Konieczny of the Troop C
barracks. Lavallee lost consciousness and was unresponsive, he said.

The state police and the Federal Aviation Administration are investigating.

Ganger said that Lavallee had been jumping at the airport for three to five
years and had made about 500 jumps. Lavallee, who was a bartender in
Manchester, was a member of Connecticut Parachutists Inc., the nonprofit
skydiving club based at the airport.

High-performance landings are becoming popular, but even some experts
believe they are dangerous, according to Parachutist magazine, a publication
of the United States Parachutist Association. In his article in the
magazine's February edition, Kevin Gibson wrote: "High-performance landings
present many more opportunities for a jumper to make a mistake, and the
higher speeds make the results more serious."

Thursday's accident was the second since May 6, when instructor Robert
"Bobo" Bonadies, 47, fell to his death after helping a student pull her
parachute cord. A police investigation showed that Bonadies had no chance to
pull his own cord. He was president of the Connecticut Parachutists and had
jumped from a plane more than 2,000 times.

Courant Staff Writer Tina A. Brown contributed to this story.

Deepest condolences to all Ray's friends and family.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites
Good article, but i think it over simplifies the accident. or put it this way, I can see this being used as ammo for the whuffo law makers to add restrictions to our sport trying to "save us from hurting ourselves" (a lot of people never thought they would see helmet laws). i almost think it's better when they stick to the "standard reports", something to think about...

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.