George H.W. Bush Celebrated His 90th Birthday by Jumping Out of a Helicopter | Smart News | Smithsonian
Current Issue
November 2014 magazine cover
Subscribe

Save 81% off the newsstand price!

Keeping you current

Back in 2004, former U.S. President George H.W. Bush (bottom jumper) celebrated his 80th birthday with a tandem parachute jump over Texas A&M University with the U.S. Army Golden Knights parachute team. (Golden Knights/Corbis )

George H.W. Bush Celebrated His 90th Birthday by Jumping Out of a Helicopter

At 90, Bush is still a decade short of being the world's oldest skydiver

smithsonian.com

This morning, former President George H.W. Bush jumped out of a helicopter, coasted towards the ground via parachute, and set down near Kennebunkport, Maine. Much as he did in 1999, 2004 and 2009, Bush Sr. was celebrating his birthday.

Bush Sr. is celebrating after a hard landing, says Jim McGrath, his spokesman.

The jump, made with his skydiving partner Mike Elliott, marks the fourth time the former President has celebrated his birthday by skydiving and is his eighth jump in all, says CNN.

“Despite suffering from a form of Parkinson's disease that restricts him to a wheelchair, Bush was committed to jump. He had pledged five years ago to do a jump on his 90th birthday.”

That Bush Sr. is still jumping at 90 may seem surprising, but seniors skydiving is actually a bit of a thing. In 2012, a team from the group Skydivers Over Sixty set a world record for... 60 skydivers over the age of 60 jumping in tandem. That group, says World Record Academy, represents 1,640 members from 26 countries.

Even at 90, though, Bush Sr. is nowhere near taking the record for the world's oldest skydiver. That record goes to Frank Moody, an Australian man who set the record in 2004 by jumping from 9,900 feet at the age of 101.

Tags
About Colin Schultz
Colin Schultz

Colin Schultz is a freelance science writer and editor based in Toronto, Canada. He blogs for Smart News and contributes to the American Geophysical Union. He has a B.Sc. in physical science and philosophy, and a M.A. in journalism.

Read more from this author |

Comment on this Story

comments powered by Disqus