Peter Zimmerli, 68, an experienced skydive-formation parachutist fell to his death during a practice jump on Tuesday near the Perris Valley Airport. The resident of Staten Island, N.Y., may have had a medical emergency which resulted in a uncontrolled, fatal landing.
Zimmerli was pronounced dead at the landing zone west of the airport in Perris. Witnesses said that Zimmerli experienced difficulties just after he opened his chute. For unknown reasons, right after the parachute opened, he lost consciousness.
The New York native was practicing an eight-person formation jump for an upcoming Parachutists Over Phorty Society show that starts on Thursday. The accident happened at about 2:30 pm.
He was a veteran of more than 5,000 jumps and was considered a very competent and experienced jumper. The exact cause of death will be determined by a coroner’s investigation.