ELIZABETHTON, TN (WJHL) Homecoming celebrations at Elizabethton High School Friday night included a pre-game visitor who fell from the sky.
Just before 7 p.m., retired Superintendent of Schools Ed Alexander arrived at the stadium carrying the game ball, and he was being carried through the air by a parachute.
“My wife wasn’t too happy when I told her I was going to do it,” Alexander said before the jump. “She’s reminded me that I have grandchildren who want me around.”
Wearing a pink jersey in honor of breast cancer awareness month, Alexander made his 20th parachute jump Friday night from a plane 10,000 feet above Elizabethton. Harnessed in tandem to an experienced skydiver, he landed on the field inside the brand new Citizens Bank Stadium, the multi-million dollar project launched by Alexander before his retirement at the end of 2014.
“The athletes and the band and the students were the stars of the show,” Alexander told News Channel 11. “I just thought it would be a fun pre-game treat for the kids.”
Alexander said he first jumped out of a plane in 1974. The Vietnam War veteran said he only repelled out of helicopters while serving in the Army’s 101st Airmobile division.
“I keep telling my wife that was way more dangerous that jumping out of a plane,” he said.