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Old 11-28-2009, 12:57 AM
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Exclamation In Memory of Christopher Thale

From the Oz Report

Quote:
Hang Gliding Death at Henson's Gap

Fri, Nov 27 2009, 8:32:17 pm PST
Hang Gliding Death at Henson's Gap
Blown launch (Henson s Gap ramp, TN, USA)
A pilot reports the following:
We had a fatality at Henson's Gap (the Tennessee Tree Toppers main launch) today. Mr. Chris Thale from Indiana. A 66 year old pilot blew his launch. His left wing dropped, his nose popped up and he spun into the rock face. Nasty.
Jeff Nibler was the first on the scene. He is pretty shook up about it as you would expect. Three or four others were there as well.
Discuss "Hang Gliding Death at Henson's Gap" at the Oz Report forum link»
As many may recall, I flew with Christopher when he was visiting Crestline this Spring. I sure hope Jeff got the name wrong. Chris's thread about the trip....... http://www.ohioflyers.org/showthread.php?t=136

If it is true, and I sure hope it isn't, it sounds like Chris's Crestline blown launch all over again but without the happy ending. What's even weirder is that I flew over Crestline today with my beloved OHF hat either on my head or tucked away in my harness. I blew a top landing on Marshall Peak and got my nose bashed in and bloodied in the process. My good buddy Gene who rode up in my car to Marshall Peak launch with me, flew his PG too close to Crestline in the 20-25 mph winds and got blown over the back and it collapsed in the rotor and he landed in a tree. Luckily my nose was not broken and I don't seem to have any brain damage from the impact (no joke) and Gene was unhurt as well. But this reported fatal blown launch happens around the same time on the same day and to someone who I had flown Crestline with not too long ago. That's not supposed to be the reason they call it Black Friday!
Sincerely,
Jonathan Dietch

Last edited by NMERider; 11-28-2009 at 10:40 AM. Reason: Sad confirmation of the facts
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  #2  
Old 11-28-2009, 01:37 AM
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I tried to call Terry and Matt but neither one of them is answering, understandable since is 2:30 am right now.

I'm praying this is not true.
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Old 11-28-2009, 06:49 AM
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Matt Dittman Matt Dittman is offline
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Default Henson's

Terry was first to launch. It was a beautiful day, perfect for souring the ridge. I was next. I realized that my visor was giving me some issues so I looked at Chris and and told him to go ahead that I would meet him in the air. I came back to my wing, clipped in and approached the launch but, was still a ways back. Chris had an experienced wire crew assisting him. I looked at his nose angle and said to myself that he is an experience pilot I'm sure he will correct it. As soon as I thought that he launched. His nose entered the ridge lift and pointed him straight to the sky. The wing stalled and banked to the left. It was instant He did not suffer at all. I was one of the first on the seen.

Chris was a fellow pilot and friend to all. He will be missed. This is all still very surreal to me. My prayer and thoughts go out to his family and friends.
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Old 11-28-2009, 07:23 AM
fdmurphy44 fdmurphy44 is offline
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What an awful thing to have to hear about, one of our brothers has fallen. I received a call from Terry this morning confirming the unthinkable. He was very saddened and still hasn't come to terms with it. He has spoken to Chris's wife and is making arrangements to return Chris's car and belongings to Indiana.
I believe that his address is in his profile information but didn't look before I began this reply. I will check and if it isn't, I will post it. Please keep Chris, his wife Marilyn and thier family in your prayers.
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Old 11-28-2009, 07:29 AM
freeeba freeeba is offline
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Default primavera here

Very soon after Christopher joined us I was able to gain a very good relationship with him. He was so smart and willing to help I really could not believe it. So positive, generous and later was to learn just how talented he was. Always a kind word and could any day kick my butt flying. His addition to the Ohio Flyers will be treasured by myself and all others as well I'm sure. Every time you use one of the four carts of which he so unselfishly built and donated those PERFECT and most beautiful front end wheel assemblies, hardware and so much cash....do think of him and what he has done for all of us here. I will.

High skies and fair wind to you my friend Christopher. Thank you.
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Old 11-28-2009, 07:48 AM
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Wow, I don't know what to say. Chris will be missed by all who knew him. RIP my brother!
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Old 11-28-2009, 08:02 AM
fdmurphy44 fdmurphy44 is offline
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Default Condolences

Please send condolences to the Thale Family at:
Mrs. Christopher Thale
2087 Linda Lane
Greenwood, IN. 46143

I don't know that we should be making any calls to Marilyn or family unless you knew them well enough to have done that before. Cards and flowers would be appreciated I am sure.

In Honor Of Chris:

Do not stand at my grave and weep I am not there I do not sleep. I am the ridge over which you fly I am the thermal that takes you high I am the bird that shares your flight I am the stars that guide at night I am the breeze that helps you land I am the LZ made of soft sand I am the light of dawn each day I am the air in which you play Do not stand at my grave and cry I am not there I did not die




Quote:
Originally Posted by fdmurphy44 View Post
What an awful thing to have to hear about, one of our brothers has fallen. I received a call from Terry this morning confirming the unthinkable. He was very saddened and still hasn't come to terms with it. He has spoken to Chris's wife and is making arrangements to return Chris's car and belongings to Indiana.
I believe that his address is in his profile information but didn't look before I began this reply. I will check and if it isn't, I will post it. Please keep Chris, his wife Marilyn and their family in your prayers.
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  #8  
Old 11-28-2009, 08:21 AM
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I'm still in disbelief.

Should we send something as a club?
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Old 11-28-2009, 09:02 AM
Paul Farina Paul Farina is offline
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Unbelievable.
Godspeed Chris
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  #10  
Old 11-28-2009, 09:33 AM
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I don't know what to say. My thoughts and prayers are with the family.
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