April 10, 2017
Another paraglider crash at Wonderland Lake, Boulder, Colorado.
Witness Ronald Zeiler said he was walking in an area west of Wonderland Lake on Saturday when he heard what he described as a "flapping noise" and he looked up and saw the glider.
>> Note: Gliders don't make flapping noises. Laundry does.
...he did not regain consciousness during the rescue and was transported in critical condition. His injuries are being called life-threatening.
>> A series of paragliding accidents has occurred at Wonderland Lake when soaring parachutists have encountered perfectly normal atmospheric turbulence.
August 21, 2016
Paragliding pilot critically injured in crash
After being carried out by rescuers, the pilot, described a man in his 50s, was taken by helicopter to the hospital. Investigators say he has life-threatening injuries.
Short scree evacuation of a person injured from a paragliding accident. Scree evacuation down an open hill side.
Feb 27, 2006
As the uncle of Matthew Hecker, who was critically injured paragliding on Monday at Wonderland Lake, I would like to express unhappiness with the choice of words used in your story by Christine Reid. Reid states, "Hecker was conscious and in pain, screaming obscenities as he was loaded onto the ambulance." This can easily be construed that Matt was unhappy with the efforts of his rescuers. Nothing can be further from the truth.
Matt, indeed, was screaming obscenities while being rescued and continued in the emergency room at Boulder Community Hospital. Matt also was unable to respond or acknowledge his awareness of the presence of his family. His pain was intense and he was releasing in the only way he could. This in no way reflects on his attitude toward his rescuers and those that have treated him since. Matt has always been safety conscious, and admires all those who work in rescue and aid to climbers, gliders, jumpers and the like. His respect for all aspects of the sport including participants and those who help in accidents is immense. The family and friends of Matt Hecker would like to thank all those involved in the rescue and medical attention that Matt has received. They have saved his life and we are all grateful.
Furthermore, Reid quotes Kay Tauscher, owner of Peak to Peak Paragliding, who was reportedly walking her dog near the accident scene and spotted the two paragliders. Tauscher is quoted as questioning the judgment of these two young men and the day's conditions in which the accident happens. It is interesting to note that Matt and Alex Gilmer were attempting the morning's first ride, and Tauscher, who claims to have spotted them, did not attempt to warn them not to paraglide that morning, was not at the scene of the accident, never showed up to assist Gilmore whose actions saved Matt's life while waiting for rescue crews. In fact, her presence in the area was unknown to Gilmore until reading your article. Tauscher's grandstanding to be perceived as the "resident expert" in the Boulder area based on Matt Hecker's accident is disgusting and reprehensible.
The family and friends of Matt Hecker respect all those involved in the sport of paragliding, and wish that other paragliders can learn from whatever may have gone wrong through the reporting of your newspaper, groups, clubs and experiences and take extra precautions to make paragliding safer for everyone. Matt is stabilized, and we all pray for a successful recovery.
THOMAS R. HECKER
>> "...wish that other paragliders can learn from whatever may have gone wrong."