10,000 feet in 35 seconds

Derek Kilbourn

Sounder News

Tuesday, June 28 2016

94-year-old Gabriolan Pat Allen’s children gave their dad a Father’s Day gift like none other this year.

They literally had him thrown out an airplane, at 15,000 feet.

Allen went skydiving, with Skydive Vancouver Island (SVI) in Qualicum Beach. He was attached to one of the SVI instructors for the whole time.

This was his second time sky diving. The first time was in Phoenix, Arizona, for his 90th birthday 

He plans to go again.

“When I turn one hundred, God willing.

“It was such a wonderful felling, I just had to do it again. My kids knew it was on my bucket list. It was the most glorious present I’ve ever gotten on Father’s Day.”

Being up at 15,000 feet, Allen said he was able to see Gabriola Island as they prepared to jump.

“We were supposed to jump around [2pm], but the ceiling [lower edge of cloud cover] was too low, so we waited until three.

He had high praise for the team from SVI.

“They were wonderful people.”

Allen said the secret to long life is to, “live life to the fullest, as much as you can. I’ve had a few pitfalls in my life. I’ve lost two wives, one to alzheimers and one to cancer. 

“They were probably up there clapping their hands and saying for me to enjoy it.”

He highly recommends sky diving for anyone remotely interested in doing a jump.

“There’s nothing to be afraid of. It is an exhilarating feeling.”

He added skydiving is something anyone of any age can enjoy.

“You’re just floating down.

“We dropped the first 10,000 feet in about 35 seconds, then luckily the chute opened.”

Gord Gauvin, Owner/Operator of Skydive Vancouver Island said, “Pat Allen has been our oldest jumper to date with Skydive Vancouver Island. Our youngest jumper is sixteen years old. We have had a few at that age celebrating their birthdays. Sixteen is the minimum age requirement with parental consent at our drop zone.”