CRESWELL, Ore. - Over two miles in the skies above town, professional skydiver and videographer Whitney Harder is working at the job the loves.
Harder is chasing a first time jumper falling tandem with an instructor, capturing the experience on video to send with the customer as a souvenir.
Harder, 47, has been an avid skydiver for 16 years. She has made over 6,000 skydives and is the videographer at Eugene Skydivers located at the Creswell Airport.
“Being a videographer is fun because you are kind of like the front man in the band,” said Harder. “You’re the one who is in front of the student and they focus on you.”
While on vacation visiting her sister, Harder took the first skydive of her life 16 years ago while on vacation visiting her sister. She has been doing it ever since.
“I didn’t really have a choice," she recalled. "I was thrown out of airplane by my brother and my sister whether I wanted to or not.”
Eugene Skydivers is owned and operated by Urban Moore who, according to Harder, “is a legend.”
With his single engine Cessna aircraft used for jumping, Moore has over 9,000 jumps and is also an instructor, pilot and a professional exhibition skydiver.
According to Harder, nearly anyone can come out and go skydiving tandem with an instructor. She encourages everyone to “change the air in their head: jump out of an airplane.”
“The only thing you can think about while skydiving is skydiving,” she said. "It is in the moment unlike any other sport.”
COMING THURSDAY, JULY 7: How many students does it take to change a light bulb?