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Sunday, Sep 22 2013 03:40 PM

Winds cancel skydive by Grove, McCarthy's wife

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    By Casey Christie / The Californian

    Assemblywoman Shannon Grove, R-Bakersfield.

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By THE BAKERSFIELD CALIFORNIAN

One of the great falls in Bakersfield political history was canceled Saturday night by high winds and blowing dust.

Assemblywoman Shannon Grove and Judy McCarthy, wife of Congressman Kevin McCarthy, were scheduled to skydive from 12,000 feet into the Kern County Raceway Park as part of an evening fundraiser.

But area winds gusting up to 29 mph forced the cancelation.

Grove, R-Bakersfield, and McCarthy had planned to make tandem jumps with skydiving professionals to raise money for the Honor Flight Network, which provides complimentary travel for World War II, Korean and Vietnam War veterans to travel to Washington, D.C. to visit their respective memorial sites.

Grove said Sunday she was "really disappointed" about the cancelation.

She had made one tandem jump previously with Skydive Taft from 12,000 feet out of a Cessna 206, and enjoyed the jump itself.

"The only part that made me nervous was when the (plane's) door opened," she said.

She and McCarthy learned Saturday night's jump was canceled while on their way to Taft.

David Chrouch, owner of Skydive Taft, said the wind Saturday night at the jumping altitude could have been twice as strong as the National Weather Service's report of 29 mph gusts.

Grove said she hoped the jump would be rescheduled as part of a fundraiser before the end of the year.

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