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This tragic event has been widely reported so I won't go into the details here. I just want to speak about one of the two individuals who were killed. I have posted this on another forum also.

Here's to Raul Valerio:

When my business partner and I started HC Power, in 1984, we started with my electronic designs for our products. When it came time to hire our first employee we needed a draftsman/designer that could do the mechanical design to house my electronics within a very tight space. Raul fit that need perfectly.

Raul was our first employee. He had then risen to production manager when our company grew to 300 employees and by the time we sold the company in 2000 he was vice president. I credit Raul with a lot of the success of our company. His management of our production line was superb.

But beyond that, I considered Raul a very good friend. When he took up RC model glider flying (something I was already doing) we flew our models together many times and he even bought one of my original design gliders.

When he and Joy were married, my wife and I attended their wedding reception.

After the company sold we drifted in different directions and I lost contact with him. I had no idea he had taken up paragliding. If I had known I would have tried to direct him into hang gliding but of course I don't know if that would have changed this tragedy. Hang gliders are quicker to maneuver, so possibly he could have avoided the PG turning into him but I have no knowledge of that. There are instances where hang gliders have collided and continued flying but paragliders tend to just wrap up in each other.

Raul Valerio was a great guy and I'm blessed with having been in his presence and working closely with him every day, for 16 years.

Sadly, Frank Colver :cry:

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