Freedom Jump Israel 2008 Celebrating 60 years of independence.

Stefan contacted Jaco Storsbergen and me with the question: Do you like to join the Freedom Jump in Israel? Well…. after a considered time of thinking (10 sec.) we replied “YES”! Jumping in Israel on the 60th celebration of the state of Israel was to us a honor.
We arrived on Ben Gurion Airport where Sergeant Major Yoav Dror was to pick us up. Our plan was to stay one night in Tel Aviv to meet a friend. The Sergeant Major gave his blessing by the words “I am not you grandfather so do what you like” and reminded us that the next day it was Shabbat. Like a Sunday and transport is hard to come by, but he gave us the advise to take a privet taxi. The next day we traveled to Ashkelon by taxi. Only 100 shekels to us Dutch guys that is cheap for a distance like that! In Ashkelon we arrived at the Dan Garden Hotel and at the reception desk we tried to explain what we want and at that time de manager walked by and heard us talk Dutch. Guess what? He was originally for Holland! What are the odds?

We trained at Tel Nov for exiting the plane and we got the water jump instructions. Everything was going very relaxed, but professional. Like my experience with German Airborne, I felt really at ease with the professionalism of the Israeli jump masters. But I must say... the Israeli jump masters are fare more beautiful that any Jump master I have every seen. ;-)
Late we also trained in the water at a naval base. That was no punishment I can tell you.
The water was great and the instructions where good. Water jumping is fun and with the right equipment and training very safe.

We also visited Jerusalem and that was great. You must know for me it was the first time outside Europe. And to visit the old city and later the Negev dessert was a great experience.
We ware having a blast! Jaco and I enjoyed ever minute of it!

At the day of 8 may we where dropped on the coast of Ashkelon. The jump, the landing in the water... WE LOVED IT! Very smooth! In the water we where picked up by small boots of the navy. I had the luck to jump in the second stick so I could watch the other two stick jump. What a great site that was! After all the jumpers where pick up, the navy transfer us to smaller zodiacs which dropped us off at the beach. The beach was crowded with spectators and welcomed us by clapping. What an experience!

The organization of this event was outstanding! I got to learn that the Israeli’s are very professional, friendly and kind people. The food was great and the weather fantastic. I got to love Israel.


Sgt. Wim van den Heuvel
Royal Netherland Air Force Reserve
604 Security Force Squadron

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