Every year, millions of Americans look forward to an exciting day- The beginning of the NFL season. Black Team was proud to be part of the first NFL game, in Miami. The Miami Dolphins invited the Golden Knights to jump, once again. This year added an additional touch, however. Our jump was scheduled for 8:45 PM, well after the sun had set. The Miami Dolphins requested a night-pyrotechnic performance, for their first 2011 halftime.
Black Team began our preparations at the beginning of the 2nd quarter. With a half time show, everything is dependent on the game clock. We had to be prepared to start a 3 minute count down as soon as the 2nd quarter ended.
After throwing wind drift indicators, Black Team was able to watch the game from above. We circled at 3,000 feet above the ground, conducting practice runs over the stadium. When we were given the 3 minute call, it was time to go to work. We conducted our final gear checks and prepared to step out. After a “Stand by,” SFC Dunning ignited his pyrotechnics and leaped into the darkness, leading the Team.
When flying over the edge of the stadium, it’s always an amazing feeling. When you hear the roar of the crowd, it fills you with a deep sense of pride in what the Golden Knights represent. It builds slowly, as you approach. When you crest the “lip” of the stadium, it is an intense crescendo of sheer volume. Dolphins and Patriots fans were no disappointment to Black Team, as they cheered us on. They were proud to see the Black and Gold Army canopies flying into the stadium. Representing all the Soldiers deployed every day, the black “Army” letters lit up, brightly, under the stadium lights! With all jumpers landing safely, we demonstrated how training and experience allows our military to accomplish incredible feats. With the support of America behind us, there is no limit to what we can accomplish.