GLASS ROOF AVOIDED
(iiy '' ~a[)li —l'reas Association.) AUCKLAND, November 21. ' Jumping out of an aeroplane when it was only 1000 feet above the Auckland Domain on Saturday morning, the well-known parachutist, Mr. G. W. Sellars, had a narrow escape from serious injury when he was able to sway his parachute just in time to avoid crashing through the glass roof of part of the winter gardens. As it was, he landed heavily into a small garden plot alongside a concrete path ana jarred himself considerably.
The jump was arranged as part of a Father Christmas gift distribution for children by a prominent Auckland firm.. Mr. Sellars was to land on the Outer Domain as Father Christmas, and was to assist with the distribution of toys on the ground.
He was taken .up in an aeroplane piloted by Flight-Lieutenant Allan, and made his jump when the machine was only 1000 feet up in order to give the children an additional thrill. • The aeroplane was so low that the spectators, of whom there were several thousand on the nearby banks, were able to distinguish his form very clearly as he stood on the wing before jumping off. There was a fairly strong south-west-erly wind at 1000- feet, and this immediately blew Sellars from the direction he intended to take. Then, as he came down into the shelter of the surrounding trees, the still air caused him to drop more quickly, and he landed very heavily.
While the parachute was falling Sellars could be seen vigorously attempting to counteract the effect of the wind and so land on level ground. He obviously saw the danger of falling into the winter garden, and fought to swing the parachute away from it when he was within a few yards of the.roof. However, it seemed almost certain that he ivas going to fall in the glass, and it was only in the last few seconds that he was able to avoid it. He then disappeared from the view of the spectators and fell into a garden patch between two hothouses. Only a few moments before two gardeners had been bedding plants there, and by the time Mr. Sellars had disentangled himself from the parachute and hundreds of children and adults had dashed up to see what had happened, the garden was almost wrecked.
Mr. Sellars, meanwhile, had found that his Father Christmas beard had been twisted by the fall, . and he limped into a shelter to fix it before returning to assist,with the gift distribution.
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