Roger Wahl: age is no limit - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Roger Wahl: age is no limit


By Sunny Layne

VINTON (KWWL)-- This week we saw 41-year-old swimmer Dara Torres defy aging and win Olympic silver.

But one man twice her age is taking agelessness to new heights. When it comes to age, "the sky is the limit." Roger Wahl is someone you should know.

Seeing the world from the sky, it takes precise skill, perfect timing, not to mention serious courage.

It's a feat usually reserved for the young and fit. Roger Wahl of Lawler says he meets that criteria.

"Well, are we going to do this before midnight aren't we?" Wahl asked at his jumping class.

He says he always dreamt of skydiving and age 92 feels like the perfect time to take the leap.

"During World War Two I wanted to be a pilot but I was always two or three months too old to get into the program," he said.

"It's just a dream he's always had and I'm just going along with his dream," his wife Emma said. "I'm a little nervous, yes."

"I don't know why she's nervous," Wahl said. "She gets nervous about a lot of things."

"Pull the rip chord with this hand or this hand?" Wahl asked his instructor.

You can't see any signs of nervousness with Wahl, in fact, he says he won't rest until he can fly solo.

"I wanted to go by myself," Wahl said. "Not with somebody, but they won't let me do that."

"Are you ready to skydive?" Paradise Skydives owner Jay Speckeen asked Wahl.

"You bet," Wahl said.

After more than half a century of dreaming, the time has come to take the dive.

At age 92, it was important Wahl got clearance from a doctor, but he only had to look as far as the camera shooting his dive video. His physician is a regular skydive photographer.

"What I learned from Roger is get out and enjoy life, come out and see the sunshine, smell the roses, and jump out an airplane if you're inclined to do so," Dr. John Musgrave said.

"Beautiful!" Wahl declared after a perfect jump.

The daring dive seemed to channel Wahl's inner-teenager

"I see you baby!" he called to his wife.

It also inspired everyone around him.

"Every time I meet somebody kind of like Roger, first, I hope to be that old," Speckeen said, who took the jump with Wahl. "Second, I hope I'm still in the game like he is."

Reuniting after the jump, Wahl planted an enthusiastic kiss on his wife Emma's lips.

But Wahl says he's not ready to retire his parachute yet. One goal lingers.

"I want to do it alone," he said.

But this dive will do for now, after all at age 92, he's still got time to dream.

"This was good," Wahl said. "Real good."

Besides skydiving, Wahl keeps young by doing 200 push ups a day.

If you know someone who is making a difference or who has an interesting story to tell, we'd like to share his or her story too. Send your suggestion to Sunny Layne, or by calling 319-291-1257.   

Online Reporter: Sunny Layne 

Powered by Frankly