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Everything posted by Kelly

  1. Ash took me up on a couple of jumps when he was practicing for his coach rating many many years ago. He was in the sky with me for my first malfunction, gave me a couch to crash on when I was tent poor and freezing cold, and helped me escape the dz for food, fun, and other shenanigans. Years later, after driving 2,300 miles I ran into him in the Bent Prop. We closed the bar that night, me in my Pajamas with toothbrush in hand. Thanks Ash for being apart of my first winter in this sport and the times since. Blue Skies. Love to your family and friends.
  2. To Dan's family, he was a nice kid and a sweet person to be around. We will miss you.
  3. I was hoping this wasn't our Fruce. He was jumping at xkeys when I first started and he was always a blast to be around. Who remembers when he "fruced" the action news reporter without her noticing? Or about his story driving across country and witnessing a terrible traffic accident, pulling the trucker out of the burning 18 wheeler, and leaving without recognition? Or the old grenade that he threw away, that the trash man found, that the police were called about, that caused an interesting phone conversation between him and the police? I remember my first long skydiving trip, the night before I was flying out to Eloy we were out to dinner and Fruce was trying to talk me into going to California instead. I knew he had migrated out west and I looked for him whenever I was at Elsinore. We never crossed paths... Miss you old friend.
  4. So glad to hear that RealXstream is back up and ready to go. This is a wonderful company, one that I'm proud to have worked for and helped to bring to dz's in America. Rock on Rx. Love ya! Kel
  5. Day one of the skills camp was an absolute success! What a great day of learning and confidence building. Come out and register early tomorrow. We are meeting at 8am; see you there.
  6. hi Larry. We are still up and running, doing well. I actually changed the number so that it was easier to get a hold of us, with being overseas and all. Call me Saturday; I'll help you. Thanks and sorry for the inconvenience Kel
  7. Yes. There are still a few slots left, more on Friday, less so on Saturday but still slots available for both days. ~Kel
  8. Just like the post above me said, they are putting on a huge charity event at my school in about 2 1/2 weeks. It is in the events section. We're kicking it off with a demo (keep your fingers crossed for approval!) in and following that with a motivational speaking event hosted by the entire team. The PDFT will talk to over 260 seventh grade students about setting goals, handling peer pressure, planning a future, and other essential life skills. To help coordinate this event and fund it the team and i also organized (actually we are still organizing) a skills camp that weekend. The team decided that they wanted to make it an entire charity event, so they are donating 100% of the registration costs to my school, to fund special programs for the students and to bring technology into the classroom. That, combined with John Eddows huge sponsorship, is allowing us to have a highly valuable week and weekend series of events. I can't believe that this is working out so well, that the team is so enthusiastically on board. They are more excited than me about this
  9. To those of you sitting on the fence about this one I have one word for you - GO! I went from NJ to CSC just for this event last year. Fritz was a blast and a great organizer, everyone was having a great time, I got Val in the tank a few times, skydives were cheap, and everything else was rockin. This is a great place to be and this event isn't one to be missed. Go out and support the MS fundraisers! You won't regret it. Love ya CSC! Kel
  10. That's how I feel! This idea spawned out of something small, just wanting motivational posters for the classroom. The team found out about my school and just loved the idea. This is a huge contribution on their part. I'm so happy about how this is turning out. We've been planning it since December. Everyone is very excited. Thanks for showing your enthusiasm. You're right, this is a great cause and great for the community and the dropzone. Kel
  11. On Friday, May 4 and Saturday, May 5 The PDFT will be hosting a charity skills camp. All of the proceeds are going directly to a local school This event is in conjunction with an appearance by the whole team at OVMS, a local middle school. On May 3rd the team is demoing into the school (pending approval by the BOE) and then conducting a motivational speaking event for the kids. Everyone is invited out this weekend. Children from the school will be out, along with some invited staff. Come out and enjoy this "great cause" weekend. More information is available on both the Xkeys website and the PDFT website. Hope to see you all there!
  12. I managed to teach until 3:00 PM and still have time to make 2 very lovely jumps from the good ol' cessna. I love xkeys! 2 jumps on a Wednesday after working all day in the middle of winter, well call me lucky
  13. I just read a review that I wrote about Freefall Adventures and Skydive Cross Keys when I first started jumping back in 2001 and it made me think about how much better this place has gotten. Those instructors who first taught me how to skydive continue to be some of my closest friends these six years later. Six years ago they did everything they could to help me, a new staff member working in the briefing room, finish AFP. Six seasons later they continue to do everything in their power to keep me current and safe. John Eddows, the DZO, is absolutely, positively dedicated to maintaining a safe skydiving center. He empowers his staff and fun jumpers to take the initiative and improve safety and develop training regimens that enhance emergency operations. Over the past year I’ve gotten to have a quite a few meaningful conversations with John. I truly see his dedication and love for this place. He has invested his entire life to this place and it is evident in all that is Cross keys. When a DZO cares this much about his business, his fun jumpers, and more importantly, his students, everything radiates. Since 2001 John has enabled and empowered me to use my long running connections and involvement with local EMS to keep Cross Keys and Freefall Adventures a safe and professional all inclusive skydiving center. John’s dedication is evident in all that he has given me to organize these events between the DZ and local EMS agencies. He’s given me financial support, his time, his airport, his aircraft, his drop zone, and anything else I need. Skydive cross keys has it all, great facilities, caring, dedicated, and professional staff, fantastic fun jumpers, an awesome restaurant, and so much more. The abundance of aircraft, the full service rigging loft run by a rigger with 15,000+ skydives, the updated equipment, and the fantastically managed, stocked, and geared gear store all add to this already stellar place. Wander in the rigging loft or the gear store any day of the week and you’ll find some of the most experienced skydivers in the North East and the country for that matter, ready and willing to have all out conversations on everything from humidity to hard pulls. Sit down with these folks and you’ll see quite quickly why they keep coming back year after year. When you come here you will share more than just a ten minute plane ride and the same airspace with us; you’ll share laughs and meals and drunken evenings and sometimes even a tear or two. No matter what is happening this place loves. This isn’t just an eclectic group of individuals; it’s an ever growing, ever welcoming family and we’re always looking for more folks to join us. During the summer this place jams. Why else would Red Bull come here to break a world record for most number of tandem jumps done in one day? By the way, we set the record at 407. Come out during the week and you’ll find an otter full of regulars, willing and wanting to jump with you, lie immobile beside the pool, or trek around Philly. Whether it’s a promotional night in Philly, an Oscars party, a long escape to Florida or Puerto Rico, or a regular Sunday evening meal at my place, these folks who make up Cross Keys truly, genuinely, and honestly are the best of friends. I’ve spent 18 months traveling around the country skydiving, rock climbing, and working but I’ve always found my way back here, back home. I love this place so much I’ve moved in next door. You’ll want to do the same, just don’t think you’ll get my apartment! :) Once you come here you won’t want to leave. It’s the people, the staff and fun jumpers, in combination with the abundance of aircraft, organizers, student and rental gear, nearby cities, good eateries, and countless other things that will keep you coming back. We’ve been dealt some blows these past few seasons but no matter what’s happened the people out here have banded together and somehow come out of it even closer to each other and all that is Cross Keys. Even if you don’t think my experiences can be your experiences come out here and be proven wrong. You’ll find me bouncing around out front or in the boarding area or the hangar with endless energy, probably greeting you before you step outside your car. I look forward to meeting you. Rock on, Kel PS: email me with any questions about the dz; I’d be happy to give you honest answers.
  14. Let's start with the logistics of it all. I live in New Jersey. Skydive Elsinore is in California. That¡¦s a pretty nice distance away, an entire country in fact. Despite that difference I flew to Elsinore four times last season and I¡¦m heading back in two weeks. This place is great. The separate, huge landing areas keep jumpers safe. The staff, always there and willing to talk and give advice, make it a great learning environment. Ground Zero is open all the time, no matter the weather. Organized skydives every weekend bring skill levels up and keep them there. Whether you freefly, belly fly, or do that silly wingsuit stuff ƒº, you¡¦ve got someone to jump with who knows what they¡¦re doing. Forget about the regular old typical skydive. When you come to Elsinore you¡¦ll find yourself experiencing other disciplines, getting on great hybrids, learning from highly talented experienced jumpers, and doing all sorts of other things that keep you learning. The coaches there are excellent, giving out good advice that improves skill and challenges less experienced jumpers just enough to keep them safe and have them pushing their limits and discovering new abilities. The owners, just all round great men who will go out of their way to make sure your stay is comfortable and good. The fun jumpers are just as great company at the dinner table as they are in the sky. When you come here you don¡¦t just make friends, you keep friends. I went to Elsinore twice last March and then I didn¡¦t get back until Chicks Rock boogie in October. After the huge success of Chicks Rock I returned home and immediately started making plans to return. Before I knew it I was booked to spend Christmas out there. Elsinore folks didn¡¦t disappoint and it was a great holiday with even greater friends. I love this place. I love the people. I got home on New Year¡¦s Day and on January 3rd I booked another flight out for Presidents weekend. When I tell you this place is home I mean it. If I didn¡¦t have a full time job I¡¦d spend the entire winter out there. I¡¦m looking to move out there, which would mean leaving a good job here. It¡¦s in large part to the drop zone and the people who built it. You will make friends for life. Southern California offers it all. Multiple airports nearby, including San Diego, LAX, and the best one of all for its location and location, Ontario airport in Ontario, CA. There¡¦s skiing, snowboarding, skydiving, surfing, wind tunnel flying, a rock climbing mecca, and so much more. Other dropzones are nearby with good people and their own perks. The beauty of having so many drop zones in one area is that each one can carve out its own self. Elsinore, well it¡¦s done a great job of creating a one of a kind place. Come see for yourself or check out the website. Stop by the ¡§Around the dz¡¨ section and see for yourself how much fun we have out there.
  15. I have posted similar topics to this prior. I'm starting a new thread to weed out all the excess. If you want local EMS agencies to attend your dz's safety day then you should start now. step 1: Find out who to contact. Your DZO, DZM, or local S&TA might know. Find out if there are any local jumpers/EMS people at your dz. Step 2: Have the following information in order when you contact the local ambulance or fire chief: Date(s) of safety day , including rain dates Objectives, what you want to achieve : This could include wanting them to be more familiar with gear, knowing where the fusalage is located, number of people in various aircraft, access roads, location and names of various places such as the peas, the far field, etc. At crosskeys our rescuers know where the "field of houses" are, where the paintball field is, etc. This helps because radio communication can sometimes be misleading. If they know the lingo, they can more easily reach the destination, handle any obstacles,etc Expected time frames At Crosskeys we often have the Fire Department run a station and the ambulance run another station. They stay for several hours and the rescuers go between running courses and sitting in on courses (gear familiarity, hazards, aircraft safety) schedule of events for both safety day and the remainder of the season. This includes big boogies/ swoop events where you might want to have an ambulance standing by, fundraisers (bring them out! Help them raise money, etc), or other events that might increase "normal activity" and require additional services. If you normally fly a cessna but will have a casa then let them know this; if they respond for an aircraft emergency during that weekend and they know the date they can immediately call for additional services. Minutes matter! A suggestion or two for events where the EMS system benefits ie: a fundraiser hosted at/ or by the DZ, a raffle, etc. Showing EMS agencies that your dz is intersted in helping them will create a stronger relationship. At cross keys local agencies use our briefing room for meetings, our hangar for debriefs, our runway for drills, our woods for rescue practices, and our aircraft to assist in the rare occasion they need it. Our FD knows that John will fly his cessna or helicopter if they are trying to locate/ size up a fire in the woods or some other remote/ difficult location to reach. The FD, knowing that they can rely on the dz like this, appreciates us more. We also do "hose swoops" where the FD pumps water and people swoop under it. This is in conjunction with a fundraiser for them. The added element of hose swooping pumps everyone up and helps with their fundraising So you've got your information and phone in hand.... You are ready for step 3. Step 3: Call and explain who you are and what you are looking to achieve. Keep it simple. Saying "I'm from the local skydiving center and we are having a safety day and we would like to get EMS/ FD people out to teach us and to learn about us. Being brief but knowledgable will keep you from talking to someone for an hour who can't actually help you. Step 4: Have an idea of when you or the point of contact is available to discuss this more. Also, have the contact phone number available. Step 5: End it with an agreement to remain in contact. Better yet, invite them out to the dz to discuss this more. Ask them for an email address so that you can send them a list of ideas that other dropzones and fire deptartments/ EMS agencies do Here are some ideas. Send this list to the chief [Green] Rig familiarity Have an instructor go over rigs, including disconnecting an RSL, cutting away a canopy, pulling a reserve, removing gear, etc It is very easy to remove a rig without cutting it, even from a jumper with known injuries! I will provide a detailed explanation to any instructors who want this. email me at for this detailed explanation or for my phone number to get verbal instructions. edit to add** Rig removal should only be performed by trained rescue persons, using spinal boards and proper technique. I am not suggesting that any non-EMS/Fire person remove rigs, but simply that they learn how to verbally instruct a rescuer in how to do it, if the situation allows for it. Obstacles particular to your dropzone and the surrounding areas. Tree landings/ rescue techniques Water emergencies, including water landings and locations of water sources that the FD can tap into. An instructor on staff can teach rescuers how to pull a canopy out of the water properly. Some methods will keep water in the canopy whereas pulling from the tail will force water out. They need to be told this; they aren't familiar with the construction of canopy and chambers etc. [Green] Kelly Evans has been working as an EMT for seven years. She has spent the last six years coordinating efforts between rescue agencies and the skydiving community. Her roles and responsibilities have had her initiating, organizing, and running drills between the two organizations. She teaches fellow rescuers skydiving specific rescue techniques, including gear removal, patient mobility, patient stabilization, gear operations, and other related topics. She also works within the skydiving community, teaching fellow skydivers how to assist in emergencies. She has assisted many injured skydivers and uses these experiences to revise known rescue and first aid techniques. She has played key roles in simulated airplane crash drills, managing all liaison responsibilities, determining, assigning, and managing patient injuries. She has worked as an observer, providing critical feedback to improve future operations. She has written detailed overviews of these operations, providing drop zones with scripts for successfully initiating, planning/ organizing, and managing these types of operations. Additionally, she has organized countless fundraisers for local EMS agencies sponsored by the skydiving community. Her training includes ICS courses, rope and tree rescue courses, water rescue courses, and trauma courses, amongst many others. She is available, free of charge, to consult with EMS/Fire departments and skydiving operations in order to facilitate better relationships and determine objectives for future drills. Please feel free to pass her contact information on to any interested parties.
  16. I'm bringing the marshmellows for a freakin' kick ass game of Pudgy bunny.
  17. P.J. wrote that article just as Jim said, after one of our regulars had a high speed mal due to her PC knotting itself up, thus not having enough drag to continue the deployment sequence. It was a malfunction witnessed by many on the dz and it led to some great safety talks and experiments to determine the cause and future ways to prevent it from happening again.
  18. Yesterday morning I went to the services for Reed. I had the honor of meeting his parents and sister. They are a remarkable family and I am grateful to have had the chance to extend our sympathies to them. To Reed's family- from the pictures I saw he looked like a remarkable man. I hope those letters bring you comfort. Sincerely, Kelly Evans
  19. Mel, We might have to raid your closet so I'm not stuck carrying around a rockstar wardrobe on my post boogie journey.
  20. I don't think we've ever done this before... To the family of Reed, if you are reading this, I am very sorry that your son/ brother/ friend has died. I am sorry for the pain that you feel and the extreme loss you feel. Reed was young; I can only hope that he lived a strong and interesting life that he was proud of. We, the skydiving community, are thinking about you, Reed, and your family. I was there that day; had I seen you I would have extended a seat or offered a drink and I would have certainly given you hugs and cried tears with you. I'm able to do this because I work as an EMT and deal with death and family members often. Please forgive my fellow jumpers who did not provide these tiny offerings; they may not know how to handle the death of a skydiving student. We do care, we do mourn your loss. Sincerely, Kelly Evans, a skydiver edit to add: Please guys, add to this thread. Help this family in case they are out there reading this.
  21. My first day ever of working on the dz PJ gave me a place to crash. PJ was apart of the large crowd that 'sponsored' me so that I could finish AFP. He provided free pack jobs for me and my instructor, Pancake. Pancake provided slot only jumps. PJ contributed to these costs. PJ started a thread about "happy Sara moments" at a time when it was hard to even think about her fatality, simply because he wanted to celebrate her life. One day PJ and I were walking to the store. A twig got stuck in my left sandal, as I tripped over it with my right foot the twig got lodged, on a 90 degree angle, coming out from between two toes. As I looked at him, in obvious distress and need of assistance, he looked at me and said, "well, that sucks." I laughed so hard i forgot my pain and was able to pull the twig out of my foot. Like a high number of other posters here I too have been fired by PJ twice, rehired once I agree, you didn't work for PJ unless you were fired at least once.
  22. Thank you JT. I have tears as I write this; it means that much to me that people understand how much John cares about the community.