Public Domain

Editor’s note: The Long March will be closed for inventory the month of August. We regret any inconvenience this causes our loyal customers. In an effort to keep you reasonably content and focussed, we are offering re-runs of some of the best columns of the year. We value your custom and hope you will stick around for . . . the Long March.

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What A Great Image!

The Long March
U.S. Air Force Courtesy Photo/Edited by Tech. Sgt. Gregory Brook

It isn’t often that I say “Wow” when I look at a photo. I did when I saw this one, of an Air Force pararescueman training in Afghanistan. I can’t believe I used to go skiing in those mountains when I was a teenager.

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The military’s elite special operations forces are facing a troubling and deadly rise in the number of parachute deaths that occur during training. According to Military Times, which broke the story, 21 special operations forces have died while performing high-risk parachute training since 2004.

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Task & Purpose photo illustration by Matt Battaglia

When Marine Lt. Col. William Henry Rankin ejected at 40,000 feet after his F-8 Crusader malfunctioned, things didn’t seem like they could get much worse. Then he fell through a raging thunderstorm.

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