Airborne student to instructor: “Sergeant, if our main parachute doesn’t open, how much time do I have to deploy my reserve parachute?”
Instructor: “The rest of your life, private… the rest of your life.”
Low-altitude parachute operations in the regular army airborne units are hours of pain and terror followed by approximately 30-second of a refreshing float to Earth and a sack-of-potatoes crash to the ground.
High-altitude parachute operations with Delta are minutes of equal parts discomfort and terror, a minute of free-fall, another minute of floating to Earth, then a kiss of a standup landing.
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