Jim Bolin jumps out of a plane ….

I had several people stop by the Forks Forum recently and asked if I might share a story about former Forks resident Jim Bolin and his celebration of his 90th birthday …by jumping out of an airplane.

Many may remember Jim as a scout leader as well as a business owner with his wife Flossie.

Anyway, I contacted the Tecumseh Chieftain in Nebraska, where Jim now resides, and they gave me permission to share the story.

Bolin Celebrates 90th Birthday with Skydiving

By Ann Wickett, Tecumseh (Neb.) Chieftain

“Everybody should try it once,” said Jim Bolin of Tecumseh, who has been waiting two years to go skydiving. He was inspired by Ethelreda Pella to go skydiving on his 90th birthday which was March 30 of this year. Bolin accomplished his goal on a beautiful sunny afternoon, April 4. “It was amazing,” he said about his trip across the sky.

About two years ago, while visiting his grandson Chris Bolin in Alaska, Bolin asked Chris if he would go skydiving with him if he decided to go. At first, Chris laughed, but when he discovered Jim was serious, Chris said… “Sure I’d jump with him.”

About a month ago, Jim called Chris to remind him that his 90th birthday was coming up on March 30 and that he was getting ready to make his skydiving jump.

You’d better buy a plane ticket,” said Chris. “So here I am.” Chris brought his daughter Ari Bolin and his sister Linda Bolin from Washington along on the trip as well.

Ari really wanted to go skydiving too, but in the state of Nebraska, you must be 19 to skydive.

Bolin thought he’d get shook up once he climbed into the plane, but he was so thrilled to be skydiving he didn’t get shook up as he expected.

“It’s like walking out your front step, the first one’s just a little longer,” Bolin described the jump out of the airplane. “I thought I’d be screaming all the way to the ground but it was fantastic. I am going to do it again.”

“I’m glad my grandson, Chris, my granddaughter, Linda and great-grandaughter, Ari, all made it. I’ve enjoyed having them all here with me,” Bolin said.

Linda said she absolutely loved being a part of this skydiving adventure even though she was surprised he wanted to jump out of a plane.

Greg Hladik of Omaha served as the tandem instructor for the skydiving adventure. He explained to the Bolins what to expect for a nice safe skydive. Hladik has been skydiving since 2010 and became an instructor in 2016. Overall, Hladik has completed over 2,100 skydives.

Bolin had a little trouble climbing into the Cessna 182 airplane, but once he was buckled in, he was ready to go.

The pilot of the airplane was Meril Mark who has been a pilot for 40 years. Bolin recommends that everyone try skydiving just once. The next item on his bucket list is going for a hot air balloon ride.

Happy Birthday to Jim and Happy Mother’s Day!

Christi Baron, Editor