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howardwhite

Jumping the Fairchild

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More old photos from "Parachuting's Unforgettable Jumps III." This is the famous shot by Luis Melendez Jr. of 10 jumpers hanging all over a 1929 Fairchild.

These are not very good scans; the color original was printed as a cover on Sky Diver. I don't have it, and will try to remember to scan it next time I'm at USPA. It was taken with a 4x5 Speed Graphic (see my Camera People post for a picture of Luis with that camera.)

The plane is still registered, now to a private owner in Snohomish, WA. It's powered by a P&W R-1340.

Susie Bateman, one of the jumpers in the picture, weighed in here a few years ago: http://www.dropzone.com/cgi-bin/forum/gforum.cgi?post=1321703;search_string=fairchild;#1321703
Chip Maury was also one of the 10.

Edit: The pictures in "The Falcon's Disciples" are better; I have replaced the ones in the original post.

HW

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!!.

I love that airplane. Oceanside was my home
dropzone until it got flooded out (by a neighbor
who had a long running feud with the family of
the DZO).

It had a door on both sides.

Once we took a piece of bungee cord, routed
it under the plane, had a guy in each door
hanging on to their end, Lucky Silman and
Sunny Yates come to mind, and jumped out.

I don't believe there was a plan other than
get close and grab on to something.

A plan wouldn't have worked anyway since
they spent the whole freefall zoinging back
and forth on the ends of that giant rubber
band :-) :-)


It climbed really fast, but flew really slow.

It had a big step on each side, and I remember
once starting to climb out and swing to the
rear, and as I came around the door frame
there was Ed McKay.

He was just standing there on the back
of the step with his arms folded across
his chest. He wasn't even hanging on.


The pilot and DZO, Jack Zahniser(?sp), was an
F-86 pilot in Korea. There was a big plexiglass
window between the rudder pedals and he
could look down at the dropzone on jumprun.

The parties at Jack and Artha's house were
legendary, at least for anybody who could
remember anything.


Thanks, Howard.

Skr

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I was just looking at those pictures.

That's Bill Spargur and Jim Hyland hanging underneath.
Lyle is up on top and Suzie Bateman is standing in the door.

That looks like Hector Nunez's dark blue Crossbow piggyback
on the strut.

And I vaguely remember Chip Maury sitting on the wheel,
but I could be confusing that with some other jump.

Skr

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Hi howard,

That bird is owned by Jack Ady of the Seattle Skydivers and '65 US National Champ. I was talking to him last summer and he said she is just sitting (and has been for a loonngg time) at the Snohomish airport. She needs new covering and he said that the aircraft is not worth the cost of recovering her. So she just sits.

Too bad because she was a unique jump ship.

Skratch, wasn't Sunny Yates the guy who went blind and continued to jump for some time?

Jerry

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The full list -- straight from the book:

Lyle Cameron (on top)
Susie Bateman
Rick Remler
Billy Lockward
Ed Melendez
Chip Maury
Hector Nunez
Rick Montez
Andy Skrodinski
Jim Hyland

(Note: I have replaced the bad scans in the first post with better ones -- take another look.)

HW

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This picture is a classic, as is the one of the Beech with the guy hanging from the feathered prop.

Two of my all time favourite skydiving pictures.
I don't care how many skydives you've got,
until you stepped into complete darkness at
800' wearing 95 lbs of equipment and 42 lbs
of parachute, son you are still a leg!

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Quote

Quote

This picture is a classic, as is the one of the Beech with the guy hanging from the feathered prop.



This one? B|

HW

I know the pilot, and his daughter :$
scissors beat paper, paper beat rock, rock beat wingsuit - KarlM

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wow. .. you old timers had all the fun! those are some nice shots. I wish i could have been around back then.

hey I'm only 35 and met 1st his daughter 2 years ago :)
scissors beat paper, paper beat rock, rock beat wingsuit - KarlM

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David, Did you ever get to jump the DGA-15 Howard that Greene County, Xenia had with the 650HP P&W? That was one fast climbing bird. It would compare with any turbine to 12000ft. Pretty crowded though. I think they were putting 8 in it.
I only got to jump it a couple times before they crashed it. Last time was Christmas day 66 and it was -31 @ 16500 and no door. There were several early stage frost bite cases out of that. I was home on leave and really wanted a jump. That was the last time I did that during the winter.
GUNFIRE, The sound of Freedom!

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Great pictures Howard.

I recall another old picture of jumpers hanging all over a twin beech (at least I think it was a beech). One of my old friends, (Hod Sanders), is holding up a beer. Do you recall seeing that one? I think it was taken in California, in the late 70's....Steve1

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The Arizona Hang Load with Hod holding the can of Coors was shot over the Ghoulidge drop zone in the late 70s by photog Tony Gonzales ... Carl boenish later shot film of it for his movie "Skydive." I think the Ghoulidge load was the first of a series of Twin beech hang loads that followed.
Zing Lurks

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I made a buch of jumps from that plane in 76 or so- I got my first 4 way from it. I probably still have a few Fairchild tickets stashed away somewhere.

Good to know Jack is still around. It's a shame about the plane, though. It was a nice plane, but Jack couldn't compete with the D-18s that were flying then.

Vint
. . . . .
"Make it hard again." Doc Ed

“A person needs a little madness, or else they never dare cut the rope and be free” Nikos Kazantzakis

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Hello to all the skydivers from oceanside
before i tell you who i am. thank you for some of the funnest years of my life. and my fondest memories.
your kindness when i broke my arm. and your
tolarance when i got in the way.
I am Jack Zahniser jr the son of the fairchild pilot.
dad passed away in 1999. i still live in oceanside
and work as a aircraft mechanic.
the pix look so good.
regards Jack Zahniser
Quote


Life is good live it well

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That was a great jump platform. I remember jumping out of it for a film Carl was working on. We would jump it and view Carl's film of our jumps two times the next week. One night at the Garth and Jay's Gypsy Moths bar and then two day later at Frank Carpenters' Hermosa Beach Rumbleseat bar. Like the the old Stenson that Lyle had, it was slow to climb, but great fun to jump out of.

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Yes, Lyle Cameron had it up at Taft for a short time. Late one night Lyle, Don Bucktel and I took it from Taft down to So. Cal. Going over Hollywood Blvd we were only a few hundred feet above the buildings. Don got out on the step (without a rig on) and because it only went about 45 mph Don was pulling us out of the sky. We got Don back in and we went down to land at the Palamar to refuel. We didn't have a radio so the guy that fueled us up had to give us a green light from the tower. As soon as Lyle got us up he headed for the tower. I looked out of the door just in time to see that green light fly into the air as we went over the tower.
On a high wind day you could get that thing to stand in place over the runway. What a grea jumping platform it was.

Regards,
Dennis
SCR-216

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