Former Paratrooper Has Only 85 Feet Until Impact, Knows He Needs to Act Immediately

A former British paratrooper has set the world record for the lowest parachute jump. John Bream made the jump from 85 feet in late June in Horndean, Hampshire, England. The stunt was videoed by the BBC. Bream described the jump as “jump, bang, crash” and noted it takes only seconds. With an assistant holding a cord that helped to inflate the parachute, Bream took his leap into a plowed field. The BBC video noted that he landed at 25 mph. Once he landed, he rolled to deal with the impact. “I’m a modern-day Evel Knievel. I just need to learn to ride a motorbike,” Bream said. The jump also was a charity event, raising funds to aid Ukraine in its war against Russia. Bream made headlines in 2020 when he jumped into The Solent off the British coast from a height of 40 meters without a parachute, according to the The Guardian. That jump was to benefit mental health assistance for veterans. In 2021, he made a parachute jump off the 558-foot Spinnaker Tower in Portsmouth, England, according to the Daily Mail. The Portsmouth jump “was just to show people we can achieve brilliance. I wanted to keep making people smile and entertaining them — it’s nice,” he said. The Portsmouth jump was flawed, he said. “I came in too fast, so I had to ditch into the stretch of water where people drive model boats. I swam out to safety as quick as I could,” he said. There was one other complication. “Then when we got out, security came up, and they thought we were terrorists because our parachutes went bang. The police came over, and when they realized that we did not do anything, they left us alone,” he said. Bream said there was real danger in the 2020 stunt, after which he was hospitalized briefly. “The water can absolutely rip you in half — a belly flop would probably be death,” he said. “With the height I jumped from, you reach about 75 mph — it’s pretty rapid. If you’re jumping 10 meters at a swimming pool, you reach about 35 mph.” He also spoke about the experience of falling. “You know when you trip up on the pavement? The reality is that you slip and hit the ground pretty quickly, but in your mind you trip, and all of these thoughts go through your mind and everything slows down,” he said. “This is a bit like that; everything slows right down when you’re in the moment,” said Bream, who has served in Iraq, Afghanistan and Northern Ireland. This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

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