Man, Super Frenchie Matthias Giraud is at it again and this time he's brought JT Holmes along for the adventure. According to what Giraud writes below, this is Holmes' first Ski-BASE jump since March, 26, 2009, which is the day Shane McConkey died after having a complication with his chute during a ski-BASE jump in the Dolomite Mountains in Italy. Holmes was with McConkey on that tragic day, which must make returning to the sport that much more difficult. To being with, ski-BASE jumping takes a lot of mental strength. But to go back to it after witnessing an accident like that is on another level. Giraud has it right when he writes below that Holmes is "celebrating life."
Below are words from Matthais Giraud:
It's not everyday that you get to ski off a 260-foot cliff, launch a double backflip, and fly away in a parachute.
As I am getting ready to ski, JT turns towards me, shakes my hand, and says, "To the first of many."
This day was a long time coming; we had talked about this day for years.
This is our first jump together. It is also JT's first ski BASE jump since that tragic day, March 26, 2009—a date which will live in infamy—JT survives a ski BASE flight in the Italian Dolomites, but his good friend, wingman, and one of my mentors, Shane McConkey, does not.
Even if we are aware of the risks and accept them, witnessing the loss of a friend and mentor is the most traumatic experience a skier and BASE jumper can endure.
But, JT is an example of composure and focus, and he carries on with the spirit of BASE jumping and skiing, that is, celebrating life!
Today, I am incredibly honored to be along his side as he gets back on the horse, the first of many.
Let's never forget the words of McConkey: "There's nothing better than sliding down snow and flying through the air"
Welcome back, JT!