Man, 90, skydives for first time

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In this Sunday, July 15, 2012 photo, 90-year-old Lester Slate, right, of Exeter, Maine, sits on the ground after his first skydiving jump made in tandem with instructor Matt Riendeau, left, at Central Maine Skydiving in Pittsfield, Maine. (AP Photo/Bangor Daily News, Kevin Bennett)

PITTSFIELD, Maine — A Maine man who learned how to use a parachute as a Navy pilot during World War II has made his first jump at age 90.

Lester Slate, of Exeter, jumped out of a plane for the first time on Sunday at Pittsfield Airport. He was guided to the ground by a tandem jumper and accompanied by another skydiver trailing a U.S. flag.

The jump was a 90th birthday present to himself. More than 50 family and friends watched.

Slate tells the Bangor Daily News he was inspired by former president George H.W. Bush, who jumped from an airplane on his 85th birthday in 2009.

Slate says he had such a good time he wants to do it again — on his 95th or 100th birthday.
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This article was provided by The Associated Press.  (Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)