Matt Congdon has jumped out of an airplane more than 1,000 times, and he doesn’t plan to stay in his assigned seat anytime soon.
Congdon, 30, and his skydiving team recently took the gold medal in a national skydiving competition in Arizona. The Island Lake man said he got started with diving after a friend dragged him along to a jump at Skydive Midwest. From then on, he was hooked.
“I like the freedom of it,” he said. “Being out in the open skies – there is nothing like it. There is nothing like the feeling of flying.”
Congdon has completed more than 1,000 jumps and said when he realized there was a competitive side to the sport, he knew he had to get involved.
“I’ve always been a competitive person,” he said. “I’ve always been involved in sports, so it was natural that once I started skydiving and found out about the competitive side, to involve myself with it.”
The 2016 U.S. Parachute Association National Skydiving Championships took place at the end of October in Arizona. Congdon and his team took gold in the advanced class, moving up from their intermediate division win last year. Next year, they plan to compete in the open division, where they will face professional skydivers.