Skydiving instructor rescues student having seizure at 9,000 feet

Skydiving instructor rescues student having seizure at 9,000 feet
Gwen Breitstein

Skydiving is scary enough, but imagine having a seizure while in free fall.
 
That’s what happened to Christopher Jones, who described it as the “scariest moment” of his life.
 
While skydiving at 9,000 feet, Jones had a seizure that left him unable to pull his ripcord. He spent 30 seconds unconscious in free fall before his fast-acting skydiving instructor, Sheldon McFarlane, was able to save the day — and it was all caught on camera.

The video was posted to YouTube on Sunday, and the terrifying two-minute clip has had more than 4 million views in just 24 hours.

This wasn’t Jones’ first time skydiving — the 22-year-old was completing stage five of his accelerated free fall program. He had been seizure free for four years and had been given the all-clear by his doctor; McFarlane also knew about Jones’ condition.

McFarlane told Daily Mail Australia, “He had all the documentation and had been to his doctor; he had been seizure-free for a number of years and believed he had it under control.”

“I remember up until the point I blacked out and then waking up underneath the parachute at about 3,000 feet,” Jones told ABC. “I think I’m fairly lucky.”
McFarlane had no idea that Jones was suffering from a seizure in the air, but he acted fast to make sure his student landed safely.

“At no time was I worried he was going to hit the ground without a parachute, but given the circumstances and where we were, I thought it would be better to get him under parachute earlier than later,” McFarlane said.

Many are hailing the skydiving instructor as a hero, but McFarlane insists he was just doing his job. This amazing rescue is one for the books.