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Leap of Faith for Tandem Passengers

20140818 Noah2 20140820 Rich1Half way through ACC in Homestead, Florida, tandem team takes part in a program designed to give back to those that have lost so much. Monday the 23rd and Tuesday the 24th, the Leap of Faith program took place. This program was created by Operation Support Our Troops-America. It is a 2 day seminar for families of fallen troops that encourages life on the other side of grief and loss and teaches principles of courage, trust, letting go and building community. On the second day, the attendees of this program take a literal leap of faith with an Army Golden Knight.

Among the people attending the program was Shannon Thorp, Kate D’Corazon, and Cassandra Randolph. They, like the many others in the program, made their Leap of Faith in honor of a loved one that had lost their lives whether it was over seas or back home. Shannon Thorp had stated that after her loss, she vowed to never turn down an amazing opportunity, such as the Leap of Faith. Not only are we helping these families, but we ourselves are honoring the fallen as they were our brother’s and sister’s in arms. It is an amazing honor for the Golden Knights to help these families and take them on their Leap of Faith.


Gold Team Flies Through Week Six & Seven of ACC

150219-A-XXXXX-001Weeks six and seven of ACC for the Gold demonstration team were advantageous ones. We were graced with the expertise of two professionals within the Air Show and skydiving fields, who helped to hone our skills as aerial demonstrators.

During week six, we welcomed Mr. Rob Reider, an Emmy award winning air show announcer. He worked closely with the newest team members, perfecting both their narration skills as well as presence on the microphone.

During week seven, the team met with the US Military Academy’s Parachute Team coach, Mr. Tom Falzone. With his expertise on formation skydiving, we were able to dial down our mass formations and even successfully create large 20-plus “big way” formations. During this week Gold team continued training on the diamond formation, as well as canopy relative work and narration.

Looking ahead, we will begin training on full show performances. This will be especially important for our three new members. It is finally an opportunity for them to train on the culmination of the last seven weeks of maneuvers and their accompanying narration. We will also be welcoming another guest coach, Mr. Randy Swallows, who will be assisting our freefall photographers in refining their video and photo skills.

Blue Skies!


Black Team Week Seven and Eight ACC

Larry diamond closing   Although our first air show in Biloxi, Mississippi is only a few weeks away,

we continue to stay focused on our Annual Certification training down here

in Homestead, Florida. During week seven and eight we had the opportunity

to work with long time friend of the team and WestPoint Coach, Mr. Tom

Falzone. The instruction and advice we received from him allowed the team to

hone in on our free fall skills, specifically when building (flying our

bodies together) numerous geometric shapes above Homestead Air Reserve Base.

The teams build formations ranging anywhere from ten to twenty four jumpers. In addition to working

with Mr. Falzone, the team has also been working closely with the United

States Army Special Operations Command Parachute Team “The Black Daggers,”

which has allowed both teams to improve their maneuvers and canopy skills

for the upcoming show season.


The team has been anxiously waiting for the opportunity to train and

eventually incorporate new maneuvers into our air show performances. Four

black team members were selected to begin wing suit training during week

seven. Each of them received a ground class from SFC Jon Ewald and SSG Chris

Clark, which included proper rigging of our parachute system into the wing

suit, exiting the aircraft, and flight characteristics of the wing suit

itself. We are eager to fly the US Army wing suits in the near future at air

shows, as well as other performances throughout the Nation.


During week eight Mr. Randy Swallows worked with our team photographers by

providing in depth classes on how the cameras we use on the team “think,”

which in turn allows our team free fall photographers to understand it’s

settings that will ultimately allow for a single photo to tell a Golden

Knight story. Each of the photographers received very informative and

easy-to-understand camera settings and technique classes ranging from basic

to advanced.


Wrapping up week seven and eight the team performed six full show

performances which allowed for our newest team mates to work on their

narration for the 2015 air show season that will enhance each of our

maneuvers for our spectators.

Looking ahead, the Black Demonstration Team

will be making training jumps into the Homestead NASCAR track and the

Florida Atlantic University Football field next week.

We are looking forward to heading back to Fort Bragg to spend time with our

families and prepping for our first show of the season in Biloxi, Mississippi!

Blue Skies

Black Team



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