Friends Remain Hopeful for Missing Skydiver
Palatka - Friends of missing skydiver 29 year old Kurt Ruppert from Lake City are still holding onto hope he will be found alive. Search crews have stopped looking on the ground for the skydiver and changed it to a rescue mission. His friends say he took risks that the regular skydiver would not do.
"My son would be under a parachute and Kurt would be under a wing suit and they would fly up and touch each other," Art Shaffer, Ruppert's friend said.
Ruppert would fly in a wing suit that could reach speeds over 50 miles an hour. Shaffer was devastated when he found out his friend went missing in a helicopter jump in Washington State near Mount Sy.
"He was doing something he really loved he was good at, I guess that's the best way to go I guess that's how you find strength in what's happening," Shaffer said.
Washington search officials say Ruppert's friends say they didn't see a parachute open.
"There's trees there's rocks there's cliffs its a very dangerous environment," Glenn Wallace with King County Search Rescue said.
Ruppert's aunt wrote a facebook post about how the family is trying to cope with the possibility of losing their son.
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