Chuck Williams

Golden Knights help Fort Benning soldier see world from friend's perspective

Chuck Williams

chwilliams@ledger-enquirer.com

Jonathan Shuskey wanted to look down on world and see the same view that his best friend Corey Hood saw hundreds of times.

Hood, a member of the U.S. Army Golden Knights parachute team, died on Aug. 16 from injuries sustained during a jump into the Chicago Air & Water Show.

Shuskey, a staff sergeant with the 3-16 Cavalry unit stationed at Fort Benning , has been planning a tandem jump with Hood for several months.

Hood's fellow Golden Knights made it happen Tuesday at a training facility near Fort Bragg.

"It felt like he was up there with us," Shuskey said Wednesday after attending a memorial service for Hood at Fort Bragg, where the Golden Knights are based.

Shuskey jumped with Jimmy Hackett, a Golden Knight who jumped into Chicago the day of Hood's accident.

"As we got to the edge and I looked over, then straight down, the calm feeling came over me," Shuskey said. "Then it was 1, 2, 3; pushed off and we went out the door."

They were in free-fall for about a minute before Hackett pulled the chute at about 5,500 feet.

"Corey had told me about this for so long," Shuskey said. "I understand now. It was everything he described,"

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