Skydiving has become more and more popular in the past few years, making bucket lists for people ages 18 and up. And in Saratoga County, skydiving has just been checked off a bucket list that’s been in the making for about 100 years. Eleanor Cunningham decided ten years ago to jump for her first time – on her 90th birthday.
Mrs. Cunningham decided that every five years after, she would jump again. So one day after her 100th birthday, Eleanor jumped above Ganesvoort for the third time. Her jump partner, Dean McDonald, reported that this was his second jump with Cunningham, and that he couldn’t wait until her 105th so that they could go again.
Having spent most of her life with her family, Cunningham started working on her bucket list in earnest when she learned to ski at 50. She took up golf at 70 and the list has only gotten more extreme since then. She was not only physically able, but wanted to keep driving until she finally gave up her driver’s license willingly at 95.
All of this adventure is well-earned, as Cunningham raised five of her own children and has 15 grandchildren. She also has 26 great-grandchildren and two great-great-grandchildren. Most of her family was present at the birthday party just before the jump, eating cake and talking about Eleanor’s supposed key to a long and healthy life – “nipping and napping.” Eleanor believes that the key is naps during the day and nips of wine at night.
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