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AP/Jeff Barnard
Kent Couch leaves Bend, Ore. for Idaho
via balloon-equipped lawnchair.

Oregon Lawn-Chair Balloonist Reaches Idaho in Wake of Brazilian Tragedy

July 06, 2008 02:26 PM
by Christopher Coats
An Oregon lawn-chair balloonist set off for Idaho, just 24 hours after the body of helium balloonist Father Carli was discovered in Brazilian waters.

30-Second Summary

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Using 150 party balloons attached to a 400-pound lawn chair, Kent Couch took off from Bend, Oregon, traveling 200 miles before finally landing in a small Idaho town.

This was Couch’s third attempt at flight since 1982, when a television program about the efforts of Larry Walters inspired the gas station owner to try it himself.

Dubbed “Lawn Chair Larry,” Walters had planned on traveling only 30 feet above the ground, before an unplanned ascent took him over 16,000 feet into sky.

More recently, Father Adelir Antonio de Carli of Brazil set off in April with the goal of breaking the 19-hour world record for the most hours flying with balloons.

His bundle was quickly blown off course and sadly, Father Carli was not seen alive again. His body was recovered from the Atlantic Ocean on July 4.

Headline Links: One Search Ends, Another Adventure Begins

Video: ‘Balloon Flight Takeoffs’

Background Links: Father Carli Goes Missing, Couch’s 2007 Flight

Related Topic: Lawn Chair Larry

Reference: Couch Balloons

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