Name: Jonathan Stotts
What is your role at Skydive Orange?
My role at Skydive Orange is Supervising Rigger/ Head Packer. I also repack, inspect and maintain all the house gear.
How long have you been in the sport?
I have been at Skydive Orange for 10 years now and I have just under 400 jumps currently.
How did you first learn about skydiving/what brought you to the sport?
I found out about skydiving through a childhood friend Daniel Wilsey. His father Rob Wilsey had my role here at Orange before he moved out of state. When I graduated high school, I was at his house for a month straight and he brought me to the dropzone and taught me how to pack and I never left.
Who would you invite to join you on your dream 3-way?
My dream 3-way would have to be with Lee Kizziar and Daniel Wilsey.
What’s you next skydiving goal?
My next goal is skydiving is to get current, along with renewing my coaches rating along with getting my AFF rating, as well. I would also like to get my master riggers ticket, so a couple goals, haha.
Tell us about your most rewarding skydive to date.
My most rewarding skydive was being on Lamberts 7000th skydive since he was very specific on who was on the jump. The only people on the jump were Lambert, Mario Ripa, Mike Boysen and myself.
What is your favorite thing about the skydiving community?
My favorite thing about the skydiving community is that we are like a big family. When you get to the dz and walk through those doors everyone is on the same level, for example nobody cares what you do for a career, you’re all there for the same purpose – to have fun.
What is the biggest challenge you’re battling in light of COVID-19?
Not being able to hang out with all of my friends. I miss seeing everyone at the dropzone, having a few beers by a bonfire and bowling.
There are a lot of challenges with Coronavirus, but what are the silver linings about all of this that you hadn’t anticipated?
I was happily surprised with how much everyone in the skydiving community specifically is helping one another in a time of need. It really shows how much people care. Also, I’m getting to spend so much time with my dogs.
Everyone is facing challenges. What companies or people have impressed you during these challenging times?
I honestly feel like the small businesses have impressed me the most because they are adapting to the new regulations, finding their “new normal” and doing everything they can to help others and keep their doors open at the same time.
We’ve all taken things for granted, that we now miss and appreciate. Outside of skydiving, what had you taken for granted that you appreciate more now?
I have taken being able to get anything at any time with the click of a button. Now there’s different protocols and regulations for simply just getting lunch out.. I definitely took for granted how easy everything was before.
Aside from skydiving, what are you most looking forward to doing when all of this is over?
I am looking forward to hanging out at the bonfire after operations with all my skydiving buddies, cutting up and just having a good time.
If you could recommend one song for everyone to listen to, what would it be?
“Your Body” by Cat Dealers.
Who/what is your spirit animal?
My spirit animal would have to be an elephant.
Tell us about a memory that instantly makes you smile?
One memory that I can think of is when I did my first angle skydive with Nathan Smith. Before we went up he said no matter what happens just maintain your body position, and my first thought was” ok haha.” During the jump we were killing it and he kept giving me the faster signal, next thing I knew I was having the speed wobbles and corked out. When I got on the ground I couldn’t stop laughing and he came up to me and said do you want to try to take a guess on how fast you were going when you corked? I said I have no idea because I’ve never gone that fast before how fast. His audible said we hit 215 mph when I corked out. To this day that is the fastest I have ever gone on a skydive.
The largest tandem skydiving center near Northern Virginia, Washington D.C. and Maryland.