Let’s Do a Dive for Shifty—and his Brothers

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You may have recently seen a sentimental email about the June 17 passing of Darrell “Shifty” Powers at age 86.  If not, read about it here on Snopes:

http://www.snopes.com/politics/military/shiftypowers.asp

While Snopes can’t verify the source of the reported encounter, “Shifty,” as he was known, was real, and so was his bravery as he served with Easy Company of the 101st Airborne in the dangerous days and months following his drop on D-Day.

It turns out that skydivers have a perfect opportunity to honor Shifty and his band of brothers. Sunday, August 16, is National Airborne Day, a day annually commemorated by Congress to remember and honor those servicemen who volunteered to earn their jump wings and serve our country as an airborne soldier. (Read my blog about last year’s National Airborne Day here: https://skydiveuspa.wordpress.com/2008/08/13/national-airborne-day/)

So here’s the thought: Let’s honor Shifty—and his band of brothers—with a memorial skydive. Actually with lots of memorial skydives. Why not organize a memorial dive at your DZ that day? You could form an “A” for Airborne, an “E” for Easy Company, or a “101” for the 101st. Or form a star (if large enough, let a veteran fly in the center), and facing each other with joined grips, give thanks to Shifty and all those who set aside their lives, answered their country’s call, and literally saved the world.

So do a dive for Shifty and his band of brothers and let us know how it went. Send your description of the jump and any photos or links to videos to communications@uspa.org. You don’t have to stop there. Nearly every assisted living facility has WW II veterans who would thoroughly enjoy a visit by a bunch of skydivers expressing appreciation for their service. After all, we not only owe them for their service; we also owe them for sowing the seeds for our sport. It was post-war veterans that wanted to continue jumping out of airplanes who began what became the sport of skydiving.

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3 Responses to “Let’s Do a Dive for Shifty—and his Brothers”

  1. bob ford Says:

    I found this as I was looking for a place where I could find a place in Stafford where I could learn to do something that I’ve always wanted to do. Jump out of an airplane! I’m an ex sub sailor, 67 years old, excellant health and physically fit, and really want to do this. Please contact me if you can lead me in the right direction! Thabks, Bob

    • Guilherme Cunha Says:

      Hi, Bob. You can find a drop zone near you by using our DZ Locator http://www.uspa.org/FindaDZ.aspx.
      All of the DZs on the list use USPA-rated instructors; any one of them would be a great place to learn to skydive. Good luck on your jump! And let us know how it goes! Blue skies.

  2. Joe Steiner Says:

    R.I.P. Shifty!!! and God Bless America and all that fought and are still fighting for freedom!

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