BSBD Jhonathan Florez

Jhonathan Florez, a prominent Colombian athlete focused on wingsuit flight, died following a wingsuit BASE jump in Switzerland on Friday July 3, 2015. Jonathan was a part of a three-way off the Engleburg mountain, exiting from the Titles with an 8-10 second rock drop. This was a new exit point for Jhonathan, who was jumping a prototype racing suit.
Jhonathan exited last so there were no witnesses to his jump. His body was recovered at the base of the exit point, suggesting he might have caught a burble and/or the nature of the suit had interfered with his launch. That is speculation at this point, and as footage was destroyed up on impact, we may never know exactly what happened.

Jhonny was well-known for his fun, loving and outgoing style towards life, friendships and the love of his life, Kaci. His huge smile, approachable nature preceded him where-ever he went. A memorial group has been set up for him on Facebook, and everyone is invited to join. Please share your stories, photos and memories with his friends and family from around the world. Once available, memorial information will be shared in the Facebook group and this post updated as well. Jhonny was a long time brother of flight and I will always miss him greatly – much love and prayers for his beloved wife, Kaci Florez.

Many thanks to Todd Davis for sharing his photos of Jhonathan with us. They do a great job of showing Jhonny flying, living, loving and goofing around, in the air and on the ground – always sporting that huge grin and a twinkle in his eyes. All of us at Blue Skies Magazine send our deepest sympathies to grieving family and friends – especially to his wife, Kaci Florez. Johnny will live on in your smiles and memories for a long time to come.


BSBD Dean Potter, Graham Hunt – wingsuit BASE accident in Yosemite

BSBDcropDean Potter and Graham Hunt were killed during a wingsuit BASE jump in Yosemite Valley, California on Saturday, May 16, 2015.

The plan was to have been for a wingsuit BASE jump from Taft Point in Yosemite National Park (7,500 feet). When support crew was not able to make contact following the jump, a rescue mission was launched. Reports mention that neither parachute had been deployed. Both were highly experienced and skilled as jumpers and climbers, with solid knowledge of the area.
The accidents remain under investigation. BASE jumping is not currently legal in the national park.

Our deepest sympathies to their families and friends around the world.

News Reports:, BBC News, Time

BSBD Orly B. King


On Monday, March 23rd, 2015 skydiving lost a King. Orly B. King passed away comfortably with close friends and family in Murfreesboro, TN. after a four year battle with cancer.

Orly was a living legend in skydiving lore with humble beginnings. He was a pioneer of skydiving, freeflying & canopy flight as well as a world champion, paraglider, pilot, videographer and photographer.

Orly is someone many would call a “Benchmark” human being. Orly King left a legacy of skydiving skill and love behind. He was the type of individual who positively impacted everyone he met. Many will tell you he transformed their lives.

The funeral is planned for this Friday, March 27th, 2015. You can find more info on the Memorial Event Page.

Orly’s battle with cancer was not for the weak or faint of heart. His ability to shine on during some of the most painful procedures solidified him as a true warrior within the community. He shared himself and his battle via Facebook posts all the way till the end.

OrlyBKing“Orly’s recent act of courage far outweighs his more stereotypical daredevil endeavors such as flying through the air and climbing on planes: In the past months he brought us along with him on his journey into the next world. Each Facebook update of his fostered a wave of love, support and inspiration among us. He touched everyone he knew, even those in passing.”
Max Cohn

A Facebook Memorial Page is set up and still growing. The stories of lifetime friendships, inspiration and love fill the page’s feed. If you are looking for inspiration on ways of being in this world, go take a look and read through the posts. You just might change your life. Below are just a few quotes.

“Orly’s kindness, his enthusiasm and encouragement, his respect—these played a key role in keeping me on an intimidating, often overwhelming, path. He said the right things, the right way, at the right time, and he did it because that’s who he was; because he simply, and genuinely, gave a damn.”  Jim Bennet

“Today the World lost a great human being, skydiving lost a pioneer, many around the world lost a true friend & I, amongst others, lost a World Champion Teammate….Orly “B” King was one of the last true gentlemen; kind, giving, caring & above all loving. Words cannot adequately express the love that we all have for Orly…. Somehow they all seem quite inadequate! The inventor of the Brainiac skydiving helmet, the OG rider of the King Air tail, the guru of the sit-fly freestyle filming position; these are but the tip of the iceberg when describing Orly’s skydiving legacy!”  Omar Alhegelan

“Orly was the utmost and most respected “Peaceful Warrior” I believe to walk this Earth. His spirit was a testament to all he held in heart. His heart he wore on his sleeve for us all to see. Living in absolute vulnerability to share his precious gifts of love and light with us all. One very precious gift Orly bestowed on us was the gift of knowledge. However, he would be the first to tell you, “It is up to you to turn the knowledge into wisdom, knowing into action.”  Carrie LoveNinja Fields

BSBD Bryan Turner

BSBDcrop smExperienced BASE jumper Bryan Turned died following a jump from the Perrine Bridge in Twin Falls, Idaho March 9, 2015. After landing in the river, Bryan was pulled out of the water and airlifted to a nearby hospital. The cause of the incident has not been reported.

Bryan left instructions to his friends in 2013 in the event of his death BASE jumping:

“If I die BASE jumping, please, and I cannot emphasize this enough, do everything you can to help end extreme poverty by 2030 and do your utmost to achieve sustainable development beyond that. Don’t waste time being upset about my dying; be upset about the seven million kids that die every year and don’t even get a chance to live. If you can, please use my death to advance sustainable development.”

Bryan Turner

Bryan Turner

Bryan’s friend Dan Gingold says about Bryan:

“Bryan was an incredibly positive, loving, thoughtful, charismatic individual—the kind of man who dedicated his life to the cause of ending extreme poverty in the world. He was selfless, kind, caring and cheerfully relentless in pursuing his goals.

Bryan’s other passions—besides his love for his family, his friends and his girlfriend Katherine—were skydiving and BASE jumping. Bryan used to talk eloquently about the ‘human feelings’ he felt while hiking to and leaping from a BASE jumping exit point: the sharp fear at his own mortality that alternated with an elation, with an overwhelming joy at simply being a living, breathing person on planet earth. Bryan loved and cherished those human feelings, and sought to use them as a source of fuel for continuing his important work.

All of the many, many people touched in their lives by Bryan are now experiencing a different set of feelings: pain and a powerful sadness at the loss of such brilliant, inspiring man, and a strong resolve to help work towards and accomplish the goals he firmly believed could be achieved.”

To join the fight in ending extreme poverty by 2030 like Bryan asked us to do, visit these sites:

News Reports:, CBC News