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89-Year-Old WWII Paratrooper Skydives with Grandkids

Updated: 08/02/2014 5:33 PM
Created: 08/02/2014 4:06 PM KSTP.com
By: Katherine Johnson

As six nervous cousins prepare for the ride of their lives, Grandpa Gerry doesn't exactly help calm their nerves.

"You go from 100 miles an hour to zero in one swoosh," 89-year-old Gerry Morrow said.

It's been seven decades since the World War II paratrooper has jumped out of a plane, but that all changed on Saturday.

"I think we should set a tradition," he joked.  "Every 70 years, I'll do this!"

After his wife, Barbara, passed away last year, Morrow sent a letter with a list of adventures he wanted to take to his four kids. First up - skydiving.

His grandkids jumped on board right away.

"This is unbelievable," Morrow's grandson, Will Summitt, said. "I'm surprised he ever wanted to get back into the sky, and just hearing that he wanted to do that I was on board immediately."

"I wish I was as brave as our Papa is," one of Morrow's granddaughters, Hannah Guimont, said. "He has literally been excited for this for months, and he has no doubt and no questions about it."

It's a minute-long free-fall before the chute opens. The calm glide through the sky that follows is the veteran's favorite part.

"It was quite a fall. I wasn't sure if we were ever going to open the shoot, but it was exciting!" Morrow said after a smooth landing.

The grandfather of eight won't stay grounded for long. He is already thinking about what thrill he'll share with his grandkids next.

"This is your Christmas present, and we're following Nana's rules," he told them.  "If it's not wrapped, it doesn't count!" hinting that more surprises are right around the corner.

Morrow is already pushing his family for the next adventure. He still has sailing a boat, visiting Guatemala and going to Yellowstone National Park on his bucket list. His kids say they'll participate in anything where they can keep their feet on the ground. The grandkids, however, are all in.


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