Twin Falls base jumper, just a few jumps away from 1,000 jumps
Base jumpers also credits the sport with helping him turn his life around
TWIN FALLS, Idaho (KMVT/KSVT) — A Twin Falls extreme sports athlete is approaching a significant milestone for BASE jumping, but he told KMVT, more importantly, the sport helped save his life.
Fifty-five-year-old Damon Monjure, who goes by the nickname Nomad, loves the freedom and feeling he gets from BASE jumping. He said he likes jumping off of the Perrine Bridge because it is the only bridge in the nation where it is legal to jump year-round without a permit.
“I moved here because of this bridge,” Monjure said. “It is a passion for me, and this bridge gives me my life.”
He started BASE jumping about five years ago, and he said one of the reasons he took it up is it helps him deal with the PTSD he suffers from. Monjure was an Army paratrooper for two years, and he has also had battles with drugs and alcohol abuse.
“By doing this it just teaches you how to let go, and you have to remember that on a daily basis,” Monjure said.
He also said he has been passing on his experiences with BASE jumping on to other veterans in need of help.
“I am helping a lot of PTSD veterans in their 30s coming back,” Monjure said. “Through BASE jumping and climbing I am helping them to see that it is OK, that life is great.”
He has been clean and sober for more than 10 years now, and he said BASE jumping is like therapy for him. He does it almost daily, sometimes making more than one jump a day, and he is just a few jumps away from 1,000.
“It’s surprising how quickly they can add up,” he said. “I remember when I first started and heard somebody say, ‘I have 500 (jumps)’, and I was like, ‘Oh, my god. dude, that is so cool, that is cool,’” Monjure said.
KMVT talked to some people on Tuesday near the Perrine Bridge who said they were shocked by Monjure’s upcoming milestone.
“I would never have the nerve to do a BASE jump. It is just too much of a combination of luck, heights, and all that stuff,” said Twin Falls resident Randy Dill who was walking around the bridge with his friend Tony Mannen.
Shawn Barigar, who is CEO and President of the Twin Falls Chamber of Commerce, said BASE jumpers like Monjure and their stories are great for Twin Falls.
“BASE jumpers help us to sell the independent spirit of Idaho and Southern Idaho in particular,” Barigar said. “It just gets that traction on social media, and people see that. We actually have a lot of BASE jumpers that have moved to the community.”
Monjure said he plans to make his 1,000th jump sometime later this month.
“I’d like to say if you are not smiling when you leave this bridge, maybe you should be doing something else,” said Monjure right before taking another jump off of the Perrine Bridge.
Monjure also said he would like to thank Shiner Hospitals for Children because as a young child he had casts on both his legs and difficulty walking.
Copyright 2021 KMVT/KSVT. All rights reserved.