Long-time Independence High School  chemistry teacher,  Melissa Bliss, did something crazy before Mother’s Day—she went sky diving.  She made a trip down to Skydive Carolina in Chester, South Carolina, where she met up with her tandem partner, the man who would be latched onto her when she made her big leap towards the ground.
There are a couple of procedures, including picking a flight suit, watching an informational video and doing a series of exercises before jumping.
“It was a very quick process before we went up in the air, the instructors made it out to be no big deal, so I wasn’t quite nervous.” Bliss said.
She paid extra for a videographer to go skydiving with her so he could take pictures and even make a video, so she could show her friends and family.
“It made a great, and shocking, Mother’s Day present for my mother,” she said.
Finally it was time to make a very large leap out of the sky. It was about an eight minute plane ride to get 14,000 feet in the air. The plane had a 20 person capacity so Bliss was not alone on this incredible journey.   Before the actual jump, she and her tandem partner crouched down so they could fit through the flight door.  The videographer went out first followed by Bliss and the tandem partner.
After a couple of spins and posing for pictures, it was time to land. The tandem partner pulled the parachute and it jerked, causing them to slow and eventually land feet first on the landing deck.
“It was one of the most thrilling moments of my life and it was totally worth it,” Bliss said.  She enjoyed it so much that she will be going again on July 7 with a couple of friends.

John Rios is a student at Independence High School.