Lodi, California — Heartbreaking video has been released of an 18-year-old minutes before an August 2016 skydiving jump that proved fatal. The video was released by his family’s attorney after a $40 million judgment against the owner of the Lodi Parachute Center.
It shows Tyler Turner in an exchange with a man holding the camera, reports CBS Sacramento.
Turner starts by telling a man holding a camera he’s “going to jump out of a plane.”
He admits it’s “little bit scary” but says, “When I get up there, it’s going to be like, ‘Oh gosh,’ adrenaline is going to kick in and I’m just gonna let it happen.”
The pre-skydive video also includes an eerie exchange with Turner questioning whether he would “make it.”
“That’s my Mom over there,” Turner says. “Very loving Mom. Done a lot for me in my life. Hope she’ll help me with more in my life, cause I want to make it! We’re gonna make it.”
Turner died when his parachute didn’t open. An investigation revealed the tandem instructor Turner was paired up with, who also died, wasn’t properly certified.
The owner of the parachute business, Bill Dause, declined a CBS Sacramento request for an interview Wednesday.
But he did speak to reporters the day of the deadly jump.
“It’s an unfortunate situation, but if you see a car wreck they don’t close the freeway, it’s something that unfortunately in this sport, in skiing, in scuba diving, there are fatalities,” Dause said at the time.
Paul Van Der Walde, the Turner family attorney, argued Dause would have known his instructor wasn’t certified “had he exercised even the slightest degree of care.”
A judge issued who awarded $40 million to the Turner family also ruled Dause can be held personally responsible for the payment, no matter the name on the front of the parachute business.
“What Bill Dause does is, once one of his corporations becomes liable, or runs out of money, has a debt, he stops using it, [and] creates another one,” Van Adele Walde asserted.
Turner’s death is not the only one over the years at the Lodi Parachute Center. There have been 20 deaths at the drop zone since the 1980s.
Van Der Walde says he hopes the judgment will force Dause to sell the business to someone who would run it responsibly.
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