‘No, I’m not too old’: Iowa veterans in their 90s go skydiving

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WINTERSET, Iowa — Two friends in their 90s traveled to the Winterset Municipal Airport to go skydiving on Sunday.

Art Hessburg, 93, and Gene Cutler, 95, are both military veterans and currently live in a retirement community. Both of their wives died years ago and they live each day fearlessly.

“I think my wife of 61 years, who’s no longer with me, would be shouting in my ear, ‘Art, you’re crazy,’ but I know she’ll be holding my hand on the way down, so that makes it really cool,” said Hessburg.

After watching a safety video and gearing up, both men boarded a small aircraft and took to the skies. At the same time, family and friends watched anxiously from the ground.

“[I] was nervous at first. It seemed like it took forever, but then there he was. I saw him do a flip in the air, and I was just really glad when he landed,” said Jim Hessburg, Art Hessburg’s son. “But to see the smile on his face once he landed, I could tell it was a good drop.”

After their weekend adventure, the men are looking forward to skydiving again.

“It’s thrilling,” said Cutler. “You’re up there next to God and your loved ones, and you got a few minutes of pure peace in your soul.”

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