Skip to comments.Hangliding Pilot Apologizes For Dropping Woman to Her Death
Posted on 05/15/2012 11:20:57 PM PDT by nickcarraway
A hang-gliding instructor has apologized to the family of a young woman who fell to her death in an accident in Canada admitting he 'failed in a major way.'
William 'Jon' Orders also said he was sorry for swallowing a camera memory card that contained footage of the young woman's last moments. He has appeared in a Vancouver court charged with obstructing the course of justice after he admitted swallowing the memory card of 27-year-old Lenami Godinez-Avila plummeting to her death. Digital Daily subscribe to our daily newsletter Orders, 50, has vowed to give up hang gliding after saying he was 'sincerely and deeply sorry' for the death of Avila.
Orders was filming the Canadian woman from a camera attached to his helmet as she slipped from the harness on the tandem hang-glider he was piloting. She tried to hold on to Orders' legs but fell 1000 feet when his shoe came off. He said his impulsive behavior was due to 'overwhelming stress' that included his awaiting 12-year-old daughter on the field where the tandem flight was supposed to land.
'I would like to apologise to Lenami's family, to the police and the public for my panicked action of swallowing the memory card as I did,' said Orders. 'My 12-year-old daughter was present that day and made the situation even more stressful at the time.'
Orders was arrested two days after the April 28 accident and held in custody for a week while lawyers and police waited for him to pass the memory card.
Wow... I guess “gee, sorry!” doesn’t cut it!
How polite of the Canadian to apologize.
“police waited for him to pass the memory card.”
After he swallowed it? sheesh
They should’ve cut that SOB open to retrieve the card. His swallowing the card was OBVIOUSLY in an attempt to destroy evidence. He did it for his daughter, my azz.
Well, that makes it all better...
Bet anything the “memory card” remembers Orders kicking the woman off his leg as she was grasping for her life.
Ahem.....so when his 12 year old daughter, awaiting at the landing zone, sees that daddy does not have the passenger anymore......
I just don’t see how swallowing the memory card helps him in any way.....but I guess panic is not logical.
What a horrible thing to happen. All because of a hasty, incomplete, preflight.
Why would he do that? He was pretty much helpless to save her once she was out of her harness and hanging on to his legs. Are you saying he wanted her to fall? That makes no sense.
Here is video of the apology followed by another report and video:
Hang glider pilot apologizes for deadly flight
Report: ‘Hang on! I love you!’ hang glider flier’s boyfriend screamed
But swallowing the memory card does?
Just an extension of the too big to fail, there is an excuse for everything world we live in.
Oopsie, she fell and died. My bad. So sorry.
No, swallowing the memory card does not make sense either, see post 8. However, he would have no reason to kick the woman off his legs. Her clinging to his legs does not threaten his life at all, nor does it even affect control of the glider much. He would have every reason to hope that she could cling long enough for them to get close enough to the ground for her to let go with minimal injury.
He likely swallowed the memory card for the same reason many, otherwise law abiding, people leave the scene of an accident (hit and run).....pure panic. He knew that her falling was clearly his fault, i.e. he did not preflight her harness in that he did not make sure her legs were in the harness leg loops. His panicking mind probably thought that by swallowing the memory card he could cover that up.
He is in deep doo doo, made worse by foolishly swallowing the memory card. He blew it, big time.
Should have stopped by a Taco Bell... ;-)
That's one crappy memory
It probably through off the center of balance making the glider difficult to control.
Truth comes out in the end.
The only thing that would have changed with her grabbing the pilots legs would be the center of gravity being lowered. A lower CG on a hang glider actually adds to control i.e. a longer lever arm for easier weight shift control. The only reason I can think of that would have caused the pilot to want to shake her off would be severe pain from her holding on to him.
Eww. I would have called in sick that week if were the fuzz. I wonder if E coli could cause a computer virus. ;d
Next time just smash the card or trash it, idiot.
"Orders", unusual surname.
Yes, he was wrong to swallow the pics and he’ll pay for that. He probably already has. Have you ever been in a situation to be responsible for someone’s life? As a nurse I have many times i’m sorry to say, and adrenalin takes over. Sometimes we can do something but sometimes we can’t. The girl knew she was taking a risk and that was her choice. I imagine she signed release of responsibility papers prior to her flight. We’re nof here to judge anyone for their actions. I’m 58 yrs old and went hangliding for the first time on lookout mtn, ga. They had a light weight plane crash last week. This plane had just taken a tandem hanglider up before the crash. I’m going back to hanglide again in june. Am I worried? Heck no. if it’s my time to go i’m ready. I felt very secure and relaxed on my first flight.