You Go, George

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I was scrolling down my newsreader app this morning and saw a story about George H.W. Bush jumping out of a helicopter. Odd, I thought, thatís an old story, why are they running it again.

Not. For his 90th birthday, the senior Bush did another tandemóhis seventhóto celebrate. The story also noted that the former president no longer has use of his legs, but he still has the stones to man up and tandem out of a helicopter. I donít know about you, but to me, the word inspiration hardly does justice to the act. (It also reminds me that my own rig has been gathering dust in the closet for long enough that itís about time I put it to use again.)

Why do you suppose President Bush insists on doing this, to the distress of his wife? I think I know why. Itís for the same reason he became, in June 1943, the youngest naval aviator up to that time. He was 19. That took a taste for adrenaline in life that heís clearly never lost. We should all be so blessed.

Meanwhile, while George H.W. Bush isnít getting any older, you certainly are. Time to go do that skydive you always wanted to do.

Carpe diem.

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Comments (7)

Paul, not to upstage the President, but did you see Pvt. Jim "Pee Wee" Martin's jump into Normandy last week? He is 93 and was a member of the 506th PIR the last time he jumped into Normandy in 1944. He did a tandem jump, but from his looks he could have done it solo. When he landed, several tried to assist him as he got up, but he just brushed off and said "I'm alright". Afterwards, he said he did it because of " a little bit of ego, but also to show folks when you get old you don't have to sit around and wait to die."

Kudos to Pres. George H.W. Bush and to Pvt. Jim Martin. Here is Pvt. Martin's jump (if the website allows it):

http://www.ijreview.com/2014/06/145103-watch-93-year-old-wwii-vet-jim-pee-wee-martin-jumps-normandy/

Posted by: A Richie | June 13, 2014 11:08 AM    Report this comment

"Time to go do that skydive you always wanted to do."

It seems along with the usual questions of "do you wear a parachute", "is it bumpy", and "isn't that dangerous" that people ask when they find out I'm a pilot, the other question they always ask is "have you ever gone skydiving". I guess it's assumed that if you're in to flying small planes, you must be an adrenaline junky and do other things like skydive and ride motorcycles.

Oddly, I've never had an interest to go skydiving. I'm not opposed to it either (and I don't use the cliched "don't want to jump out of a perfectly good airplane" answer), I just don't have any desire to do it.

Now aerobatics and mock dogfighting, those sound fun! Perhaps I should look in to doing that.

Posted by: Gary Baluha | June 13, 2014 1:55 PM    Report this comment

I was reminded of something today also - selenophobia.

Initially, a morbid fear of the Moon, on Friday the 13th yet, seemed relegated to the realms of movies or therapy, then I read the blog. A segue was provided to me to examine my fear of heights in buildings, on cliffs - everywhere (gulp, that Grand Canyon) but in an airplane.

Good for the ex-Prez. For now, just living that long would satisfy me, especially to keep my health. Maybe next trip, though, I'll at least get within 50 feet to that edge at the Canyon now...

Thanks, I'm sure, for the inspiration.

Posted by: David Miller | June 13, 2014 7:32 PM    Report this comment

From Navy Aviator in WWII to a 92 year old skydiver. What a remarkable life President George W. Bush has had.

Posted by: Rafael Sierra | June 14, 2014 9:20 AM    Report this comment

I am proud to share one thing with Pres Bush. I was the youngest Air Force Officer at the time I received my direct commission in wartime Korea. I still don't know if going from Sgt to Second Louie was a promotion! The guys in personnel were apparently to busy to notice that I was underage to be an Officer. I said to myself, "what the heck, I'll be of age before anyone notices, if ever". I have never parachuted, but I did fly, solo, all 3 of my little airplanes on the same day, to celebrate my 81st birthday. I look forward to 85 and 90. Dr. Jim.

Posted by: James Hodges | June 16, 2014 12:10 PM    Report this comment

Had a friend who succumbed, once, to that parachute jump itch. Landed on a corrugated iron hanger roof, was dragged along it and over the roofing nails, leaving strips of skin, flesh and enough blood to drip from the gutters, and then dropped from the roof to the floor and broke his ankle. After that I never got the itch again.

Posted by: John Patson | June 17, 2014 3:36 AM    Report this comment

I did fly, solo, all 3 of my little airplanes on the same day, to celebrate my 81st birthday. I look forward to 85 and 90. Dr. Jim.

You go Jim!

Posted by: Paul Bertorelli | June 17, 2014 12:46 PM    Report this comment

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