Jeanna Renee Triplicata Georgia college bound teen dies attempting bucket list wish items. Also killed was instructor on the teen’s first ever skydiving jump.
Jeanna Renee Triplicata, 18, a recent high school graduate had vowed to go skydiving before the start of her freshman year at the University of North Georgia in August, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.
‘Jeanna wasn’t scared a bit,’ her father, Joey Triplicata, told AJC. ‘She had wanted to do this, for whatever reason.’
She went with her grandmother on Sunday to Skydive Atlanta, while some of her other relatives came to watch, the media outlet reported.
One had never jumped before, the other had jumped thousands of times before
But during the tandem jump with an instructor, the family saw a parachute spinning out of control.
The teen and her 35-year-old instructor, Nick Esposito, 35, landed in Upson County field and were killed. Esposito of Warner Robins who had started skydiving in 2011 professionally had been on thousands of jumps before.
Upson Sheriff Dan Kilgore attributed the deadly episode to an issue with their parachutes.
‘Upon exiting the aircraft, the primary parachute failed to open properly and went into a spin,’ he told the outlet. ‘The emergency parachute did not deploy until extremely low altitude and did not fully open.’
Her father, Joey, said the fatal accident marked the ‘worst day of [the family’s] lives.’
‘It doesn’t even seem real,’ he said. ‘We’re going to miss her every day for the rest of our lives.’
On Monday, Skydive Atlanta said the company is working with local investigators and the FAA to determine what happened.
Speechless as two families agonize & reflect
‘Our community is devastated for both our team member and the student and their respective families,’ Skydive Atlanta owner Trey Holladay said in an emailed statement. ‘We are all stunned and truly at a loss for words as we are a close-knit family. We have spoken with the next of kin and all are asking for privacy while we process and grieve.’
In addition to her parents and grandmother, Jeanna is survived by a 15-year-old brother, 9-year-old sister and numerous other relatives and friends. A GoFundMe page was created to assist the family.
“While there is nothing that we can do to bring back this sweet soul nor replace her spirit, we are all speechless and looking for a way to support the Triplicata family,” the fundraiser organizer posted.
The Georgia Bureau of Investigation is conducting the autopsies. Funeral arrangements were pending.