The incident was reported around 10:45 a.m. when a 911 caller reported a skydiver had been found dead at the Cape Fear Regional Jetport in Brunswick County.
Officers discovered the body of Sgt. 1st Class Justin Goff, 29, of the United States Army, who was pronounced dead at the scene.
Oak Island Police Sgt. Loyd Hames told WECT-TV that Goff was on a recreational skydiving trip and sustained an injury in a “freak accident” that occurred amid high winds. Goff’s parachute deployed and Hames told WECT-TV he did not hit anything on the way down.
A police report obtained by WWAY-TV listed the death as suspected cardiac or respiratory arrest. An autopsy is scheduled to determine the exact cause.
The 29-year-old was originally from Florida, and currently stationed at Fort Bragg in Fayetteville, WECT reported. Goff was married with three children, according to Omega Gymnastics in Fayetteville.
“Coach Justin will be greatly missed by many of our gymnasts and tumblers,” a post by the group on Facebook read, in part.
The group shared that Goff was a recreational and boys coach.
“He will be greatly missed by all of our Omega families and friends, and our thoughts and prayers are with his wife, 3 children, and his entire family and loved ones,” the group said.
In a similar incident earlier this month, a “very experienced” skydiver fell to his death in New Jersey. Officials said that Paul Haaf’s parachute did deploy, but he nevertheless continued a rapid and uncontrolled descent. When he did try to use an emergency chute, he was already too close to the ground, WPVI reported.