Bath Beach resident Arkady Shenker, 49, died yesterday afternoon in a skydiving accident in New Jersey. Authorities believe that his parachute failed to open causing him to free fall to the ground, where he was later found by police in the backyard of a southern New Jersey home.
The Bath Beach resident was using something called a “wing suit,” which allows a person to swing through the air, and he had made over 350 jumps. Shenker was parachuting with Freefall Adventures, a parachuting company, and there were 15 other divers in the plane he leaped from.
One witness watched as Shenker began to spiral towards the ground uncontrollably. Witness Lamont Dye told Philadelphia’s NBC 10:
We seen him coming down. He was going around and around and the chute was here and he was here. As soon as I seen that I knew he was in trouble.
The Gloucester County Prosecutor’s Office says it’s unclear whether the specialized parachute that Shenker was wearing during the jump around 2 p.m. Sunday opened properly.
The skydiving company told NBC 10 that they had no comment and the Federal Aviation Administration is investigating the accident.