Funeral this weekend for Army skydiver and Lakota grad
WEST CHESTER, OH (FOX19) - Funeral services will take place this weekend for Lakota West High School graduate and U.S. Army skydiver Sgt. Corey Hood.
Visitation will be 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Friday at the West Chester Church of the Nazarene, 7951 Tylersville Rd.
His funeral will follow at 10 a.m. Saturday at his alma mater, 8940 Union Centre Blvd.
The West Chester native who served five tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan died Sunday from injuries in a midair collision with another jumper at the Chicago Air & Water Show.
Hood, 32, a member of the United States Army Golden Knights, was hurt while performing a stunt called a "bomb burst" a Golden Knights spokeswoman, has said.
Donna Dixon has said the parachutists collided during the stunt. Witnesses told first responders at least one of the parachutists hit a building in the lakefront district.
Hood was pronounced dead Sunday at Northwestern Memorial Hospital.
He was a standout wrestler for Lakota West's Firebirds and also played baseball.
As a Sergeant First Class, Hood enlisted in the army more than 10 years ago and served in Iraq and Afghanistan, according to his bio on the Golden Knight's website.
He has been awarded two Bronze Stars, two Meritorious Service Medals, five Army Commendation Medals, five Army Achievement Medals, a Master Parachutist Badge, Air Assault Badge and a Combat Action Badge.
Spectator Heather Mendenhall told the Chicago Tribune on Saturday that she was watching the show from a rooftop and saw Hood strike the roof of a high-rise building next door with his feet and then fall - his parachute trailing behind him.
"His legs caught the tip of the roof, and then he fell over. It was horrible," she told the newspaper.
The other parachutist, who has not been identified, landed on North Avenue Beach near the main viewing area for the show, Fire Department spokesman Juan Hernandez said Saturday. He was treated for a broken leg.
The accident is under investigation, the Army said. The team did not perform again on Sunday.
"The Knights are a very close knit team and the military skydiving community is equally close; we will support Corey's family and each other during this difficult time," Col. Matthew Weinrich, commander of the U.S. Army Parachute Team, said in a statement.
Hood served five tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan and had earned numerous awards, including two Bronze Stars. He is survived by his wife, Lyndsay.
Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel called Hood "an American hero," saying in a statement late Sunday, "He defended our freedom, he amazed so many as a member of the Golden Knights, and he will be missed."
Specialists such as the Army and Navy jumpers can reach speeds of up to 180 mph during freefall by pulling their arms to their sides. They typically open their parachutes at around 5,000 feet, joining their canopies together in formation and setting off smoke grenades to send red smoke trailing behind them.
The annual two-day air show draws millions of people to Chicago's Lake Michigan shoreline. Headliners included the U.S. Navy Blue Angels.
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