Parachutists badge

True Stories

Sarge's Last Parachute Jump
Bruce and Me - The Story

©2001 Sarge Lintecum
Sarge's Last Jump Sarge's friend Bruce was a door gunner in Vietnam and he sponsored Sarge's Jump

Bruce was the manager of the Rhythm Room Blues Bar in Phoenix, Arizona when I first met him. He is a Vietnam combat veteran (door gunner), and an avid sky diver. One night I was sitting at the bar with Bruce and he got this impish look on his face as he invited me to make a parachute jump with him that weekend. He was hoping to see me squirm nervously on my bar stool as I tried to think of a way to say "no thanks", but I quickly answered, "Sure, Bruce, I'd love to". Of course I didn't really want to, I just wanted to spoil his fun. :-)

Then I told him that I had a couple of requests: 1) a camera man to jump with us and film us all the way down. He said, "No sweat you've got it, Sarge". And 2) make it a fund raising event for a worthy cause." Well, Bruce thought that was a great idea so instead of just going out to jump that weekend, we made the jump about a month later to allow time for the proper press releases and preparation that make a fund raising event a success. And that it was -- we raised about $450.00 for an organization that helps the homeless in Phoenix.

Channel 12 News covered the jump from the ground and later came out to my house to borrow the "helmit-cam" footage to edit into the evening news. Our message came through loud and clear on the news that night (which is not the norm when dealing with the press). The message was, "Hey, I'm a 100% disabled Vietnam combat veteran, if I can help, anyone can!" They put my phone number on the news and we had people call to ask how they could help the homeless. I told them to be creative. The government doesn't put much money into a veteran's disability check to help others with, but if you are creative you can help others beyond your financial means. Airborne, Bruce!!!


Read the poem Bruce And Me

Return to True Stories