U.S. Forces Reported An Alarming Rise In Parachute Deaths – And Experts Are Baffled As To Why

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Image: Facebook/United States Special Operations Command (USSOCOM)

On March 18, 2015, 29-year-old Navy SEAL Jason Kortz of Highland Ranch, Colorado, flew a parachute training mission 10,000 feet over the Perris Valley in southern California. It was his 33rd jump since enlisting as a special operator in 2012. Sadly, however, it was also to be his last – he died moments after jumping from the aircraft.

Image: Facebook/Naval Special Warfare Command

“Losing such a promising special operator is a tragedy, not just for his family and the Naval Special Warfare community, but also for this nation, [which] needs men of such uncompromising character in these uncertain times,” Captain Todd Seniff, commodore of Naval Special Warfare Group One, told the Los Angeles Times on March 19, 2015.

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Image: Navy SEAL Foundation

A Petty Officer 3rd-class with a master’s degree in business administration, Kortz had graduated from SEAL training in September 2014. The jump that killed him was his first high altitude, high open (HAHO) jump with heavy combat equipment. An investigation subsequently concluded that his death had been “preventable.” More than this, it appeared to form part of a disturbing trend…

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