54°F
Sponsored by

Skydiving Program "Warriors From the Sky"

When veterans return home from deployments overseas, dealing with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and combat-related injuries can interfere with work and their personal lives. A skydiving program called "Warriors From the Sky" is allowing these veterans to power up by going down.
"They need to somehow feel that again. It makes them feel alive; it makes them feel like real soldiers again."
When veterans return home from deployments overseas, dealing with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and combat-related injuries can interfere with work and their personal lives.  A skydiving program called "Warriors From the Sky" is allowing these veterans to power up by going down.

"Of all the things you do, there's something about the military that never leaves you."

Kent Alwood is a retired veteran who has spent most of his life in the military.

"Being in the military dominates you.  It never goes away."

Alwood says there are many organizations around the country that exist to help veterans dealing with Post Traumatic Stress, or PTSD, after returning home but none of them are quite like the program he designed.

"The excitement, and boy... the adrenaline rush. And that's what this is about. They come home, and now they're paying the light bill, the gas bill, and taking care of the grandkids, and all that's great- but they need another adrenaline rush."

Alwood says the stress and pressures of war can completely change a person for years after their return.  His non-for-profit organization called "Warriors from the Sky" breathes life back into veterans who are making the jump.

"They need to somehow feel that again. It makes them feel alive; it makes them feel like real soldiers again."

Any honorable discharged veteran can skydive at no cost, regardless of injuries or lack of experience.

"We have soldiers, sailors... we don't care if they're male, female, cold war- they don't have to be combat veterans. We provide them with what's called a tandem jump, which what they just did here, where you attach yourself to one of the instructors."

Once the plane reaches 10,000 feet, they jump!

"It's easy to do cause all you gotta do is fall out, and gravity takes care of ya. You WILL, this is the only sport you WILL finish the thing. You're gonna go to the ground no matter what."

"Everyone says it's the most exciting thing they've ever done in their life. The endorsement from the families and friends. I can't tell you how many wives say "wow. You've made... he's a different person."

The owner of Gravity Powered Sports is a retired veteran who provides the service as a token of appreciation to the men and women who have served the United States.  Alwood says on this Memorial Day weekend, he's thankful to be among the men and women who came home.

"It's really not about us. It's about the guys that died and didn't come back. I mean what do we got to complain about? I lost a lot of people that were 18, they never got married. Never paid a bill. I go out to the cemetery to see my buddies, and whatever and say hi and that type of stuff. That's what it's really about. I mean look, we're walking and talking and living and eating and enjoying life. I mean we got it made. It's about the guys who didn't come back. That's what it's really all about."

Page: [[$index + 1]]
comments powered by Disqus
Got a news tip to share with us? Call us at (260) 408-WFFT or e-mail the newsroom at news@wfft.com.