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CDRINF last won the day on February 21 2019

CDRINF had the most liked content!

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  1. I am headed to Vicenza, Italy this fall. Retired military, now DA civilian. Looking to hook up with any U.S. skydivers in the area; I figure the 173rd may have a few. Looks like Skydive Thiene is the closest place to go. any word on what the skydiving scene is like?
  2. ... and that should be the clue. I remember well the old “wreck dot.” It spiraled into oblivion with only a hand full of hangers on making the majority of the posts, most of which were grumblings about the “kids” on and assorted insults towards each other. The dropoff here has been not quite so dramatic, but the volume of posts is way down, and most of the old “post whores” that made it a true community are gone. It’s sort of sad, because I don’t think anything that ties the whole skydiving community together in real time has taken its place; certainly not to the level where it could generate its own boogie for several years running.
  3. There was a time when you his was THE place to find out what was going on in the skydiving world. You could find out out everything that was going on: The latest in the boogie scene, immediate info on incidents within minutes of them happening, reports from USPA board meetings in real time. There was a vibe so strong that there were actually boogies where jumpers who knew each other only online came together and instantly bonded. Plus there were the ongoing shenanigans: the drunk dial list, seeing how quickly you could get banned on any given topic, and the truly bizarre ravings on the DB Cooper threads. It was a unifying force. No longer! Call it the Facebook effect or what have you, but it’s just not what it once was. Time to put it to rest.
  4. One of the good "bad boys" of skydiving. My best Carbone memory is at the WFFC when a couple of clowns landed a Mr. Bill with one standing on the other's shoulders. Scotty got on the PA system and publically read them the riot act for being stupid. I remember thinking to myself: "If Scotty Carbone is chewing you out for doing something dumb in skydiving, then you know you have REALLY screwed up!"
  5. I returned from 2 years living in the UK last August. My home DZ was Skydive Netheravon, The Army Parachute Association DZ on the Salisbury Plain. You could see Stonehenge from free fall which was cool! 1. In addition to joining BPA you will have to convert your license to BPA. The chief instructor at Nethers did this for me be going over my licenses and logbooks. I did not have to take any tests or evaluation jumps. If you are over 40 you will need a doctor's statement of fitness to skydive. The form is on the BPA website. 2. Skydive scene in UK is smaller and has more of a club feel. It is definitely more expensive! BPA membership is 110 GBP which is 142 USD at today's rate (though that is a better deal than I had due to currency fluctuation based on the Brexit vote). Civilian jump tickets at Nethers were 21 GBP and military tickets were discounted to 13 GBP. The civilian ticket price is roughly comparable to US since the Pound is down, but again when I was there I took a beating on the exchange rate. Yes, the weather is problematic! We spent a lot of time on the ground looking at clouds. Someone would eventually say "Cuppa Tea?" and we would have a "cuppa" and wait things out. The prime jumping time is May-August based on the weather. A lot of the very active Brit skydivers go to Spain, Dubai, and the US to jump in the winter. Even when we were jumping, Ops seemed to be slower and more deliberate without the usual American tendency to do everything fast. There seemed to be more safety consciousness (probably a good thing) but also more restrictive rules on what you can do, what gear you can use and who you can jump with based on training and certifications. A lot of older gear is outright banned and the joke is that BPA stands for "Ban Parachuting Altogether." A lot of the Brits I jumped with were amazed at what they saw as a very lax, "no rules" culture in US skydiving. 3. I never jumped at Headcorn since I lived only 25 minutes from Nethers. Like anyplace you will need to scout around and see what fits you best. Nethers was a big Wingsuit DZ though there were efforts to revive the Big-Way FS/RW scene. Also, purchase all of your gear here in the US and take it back with you! Most skydiving gear in use in the UK is manufactured in the US and as you probably know, ordering it and shipping through Royal Mail from the US costs an arm and a leg! An alternative is to find a friendly US military or State Department jumper with a US APO mail box who will let you ship through them. The BPA website is very extensive and has what you need in terms of forms and rules. Cheers! Chris D-15996
  6. I was very privileged to jump with Tom at the "Week of the Eagles" and 101st Airborne Division Reunion airshow at Fort Campbell, KY in 2000. We did a 101st Combat Veterans Jump with Tom from WWII, 1SG (ret) Billy Colwell from Vietnam, CW4(ret) and former Golden Knight Chuck Gerhing representing Special Ops, and me from Desert Storm. Tom actually started his service as a Glider Trooper with the 907th Glider Field Artillery Battalion of the 101st. He told me of going into Holland during Operation Market Garden on a glider. The experience of the glider landing was so hair-raising that he decided on the spot that if the 101st had to make an another airborne assault, he was going by parachute! He immediately volunteered for Jump School. Guys like Tom are special and few and far between! Airborne, Tom and Blue Skies! CDR
  7. That's what we thought about both Quincy and Rantoul.
  8. It's in open source. Does not appear to be much of a cover-up to me. How USPA chooses to deal with it may be another matter. This is just another one in a long list of cases where skydivers are often their own worst enemies, both individually and collectively. I am generally supportive of USPA and think it fills an important role. If, however, we don’t like who is leading and representing us, then we need look no farther than ourselves, the people who elect them. If you run a cool DZ, have a fast-climbing airplane, or are perceived as a shit-hot skydiver the USPA membership (or at least the small percentage who vote regularly) seem willing to overlook a lot. In our national and regional leadership we have variously elected (often multiple times) people with some serious issues, both skydiving and non-skydiving related, to include criminal behavior and causing skydiving fatalities. Some may see the non-skydiving issues these folks have had as irrelevant, but I’m not sure I like what it says about their character and judgment. For careless skydiving safety practices that kill and injure, there is no excuse. All of the above is part of the reason that no one outside of skydiving takes skydiving seriously. We claim to be a self-policing sport, but really don’t do a very good job of it whether from the standpoint of the leadership setting the example, or the membership actively participating in changing the leadership.
  9. ^^This.^^ And someone's comment about not doing it if you were specifically told not to. While in flight school, we were told not to SCUBA, skydive, or ride motor cross (funny, they didn't say anything about street bikes). You wouldn't get in trouble if you were caught doing those things, but because we were told not to do them while in flight school, you could lose benefits if you died because of it. You also WOULD get in trouble if injuries suffered during one of those activities caused you to go "med down" (or worse, NPQ). Both of the above are absolutely correct and I say this as an old fart Army colonel with 28 years in. There is an ongoing myth I keep running into that somehow you need permission from the chain of command to skydive. It's simply not true, any more than you would need permission to go bowling. It's a legitimate recreational activity and it's not illegal. In some military school situations you may be required to curtail high risk activities so that you don't risk getting dropped for an off duty injury, but that's the only instance I know of. I have also read and done a number of line of duty investigations, to include sport parachute accidents. They were always considered in line of duty. CDR
  10. I know Missouri tried to charge an "Amusement Tax" on jumps a few years back, and even tried to hit my DZO up for 2 or 3 years worth of back taxes. CDR
  11. Matt, I'm in Afghanistan again. One of my CPTs from the 1st Bde staff back in 2000 is now the Division Historian. I will drop him a line and see what he can do. Blue Skies! Chris Reed D-15996
  13. It's simple. You don't need to kick him out, but stop enabling this behavior. Quit writing the checks, ordering the books, registering for classes and doing everything for him! As long as you keep enabling his irresponsibility, he has no reason to change. CDR
  14. Broke the tip of my ankle by banging it on the fuselage on exit from a Skyvan at the 2004 WFFC. Made two more jumps, drove home and hobbled around on it for a week before finding out it was broken. Was in a removeable cast for a while and jumping again in 6 weeks. Broke my right wrist 7 weeks ago on landing (see attached pic). Was coming in hot, tried to punch the flair a bit harder, the grass was wet and my feet went out from under me. I made a rookie mistake of putting my arm out behind me to break my fall. Cast for 5 weeks and now in a removeable soft splint. Still hurts, but I can pull and do emergency procedures. Tough part is doing anything that requires a pushing or twisting motion. Packing is slow and uncomfortable! May try to get back in the air this weekend or next. CDR
  15. I took flying lessons at the Quantico club '81-'82 when I was in high school. Got as far as soloing, but never got my license before I went off to USMA. It was a great deal and good club. Got my start skydiving at the Fort Campbell club in '88. Another good deal now gone. The only Army flying club I am aware of still around is at Fort Leavenworth, KS. As discussed above, all of the parachute clubs are gone. Morale and Recreation Activities have been on the decline in the Army for many years. The Officer and NCO clubs are almost all gone, and the high end rec activities like skydiving and scuba clubs are largely gone. Gyms, swimming pools, bowling alleys and golf courses are about all that is left and even the fees for those are higher than they once were. What happened is that in 1988 the regs changed and all MWR activities not designated mission essential (mainly gyms - we need soldiers to stay healthy) no longer could get appropriated funds. They had to operate as businesses and make a profit to stay open. This meant that these activities now had to charge soldiers for what was once free or very inexpensive. Additionally for skydiving, even if you could get the gear paid for, you have to get the local aviation commander agree to support with lift. Only solution I could see would be for an installation MWR to enter into a partnership with a commercial DZ like some college clubs do, or for the exisiting demo teams to expand their ops to allow non-team members to jump under the guise of maintaining a "bench" for the team. CDR