Why is this a story?

Why is this a story?

Postby gardengirl » Dec 30th, 2018, 11:38 am

So this Man Child is a vandal, a thief and a mooch and spent his entire life playing until he eventually killed himself.

https://www.castanet.net/edition/news-s ... htm#245629


Mike Racicot kept a letter with one request should he die: "I want to be put back into the air."

The five-page handwritten missive the elite BASE jumper had left at his home in British Columbia had instructions on what to do with his possessions and his beloved dog, a 10-year-old boxer called Taco.

The 37-year-old — known as "Treehouse Mike" — died on July 26 while on a wingsuit flight in Switzerland.

"We were always worried about him, but he was so good about taking care of himself," said Racicot's sister, Rachel Polite, who has spent the past few months fulfilling her brother's wishes. "Now we're taking care of him."

As per his final wishes, Racicot's body was cremated and the ashes were sent to family and friends who were to take them on more adventures. A big "ash jump" was held in Squamish, B.C., in late August when more than two dozen friends jumped off a cliff. When one opened his parachute, Racicot's ashes burst forth in a giant plume.

His ashes have also been spread on jumps off the Kuala Lumpur Tower in Malaysia, the massive Balinghe River Bridge in China and Trump Tower in Vancouver, among others. Another jump will take place in Mexico on New Year's Eve, and some of his ashes will be taken back to the Swiss mountain where he died.

Racicot earned his "Treehouse" nickname for living off-and-on for years in a secret tree house he built on Blackcomb Mountain in Whistler, B.C. He became a journeyman carpenter, a beekeeper — you had to donate money to a local charity to get some honey — and worked for a time at Tim Hortons. He hitchhiked across the country several times and rode freight trains for fun.

He spent his early years in Quebec before moving to Arnprior, Ont., in the Ottawa Valley, when he was four years old.

That's where he started to skateboard, at age 9, because he felt more comfortable gliding then walking, said his 40-year-old sister. People made fun of his walk due to problems with the arches in his feet.

"He had a little bounce in his step when he walked," said Polite, so he skated all over the small town. "He became really good, really quick."

The family soon moved to Barrhaven, an Ottawa suburb, where, as a teen, Racicot advocated for a skate park that would later become a favourite haunt for the youngster and his friends.

His father tried putting Racicot in football, but that didn't take.

"I say to Mike, 'To be good at this, you have to hit the other guys,'" Al Racicot says. "He didn't have that in him."

His adventurous spirit couldn't be contained, his family said. He jumped out of trees and soon began jumping off bridges, some 35 metres high, into the water below.

"The first time I really met him he was doing flips off the roof of the community centre into the snow," said Adam Myers, his childhood friend.

Together, Racicot and Myers started a graffiti collective — called DBS crew — that left their marks across the city.

"If you're in Ottawa, Mike is a legend," Myers said. "All they knew is this guy started DBS, moved out west, lived in a tree fort and became a BASE jumper."

On his 18th birthday, Racicot asked his father for a skydiving session. Al Racicot complied. The father, son and Myers drove to Arnprior where Racicot went up in a plane and jumped.

"He was so stoked, you could see it in his eyes," said Myers.

At 20, Racicot dropped out of college.

"He wasn't the greatest one in school," his father said, "but, boy, could he work."

But apparently he preferred not to.

Most of all, Racicot wanted adventure. So at 23, he packed up everything he owned, including his skateboard, stuffed it onto a small Yamaha scooter and headed west.

The scooter maxed out at 60 km/h through the flats of the Prairies and chugged uphill at 40 km/h through the Rockies, his life's belongings weighing him down. It took him a month to get to British Columbia. Drivers gave him the finger the entire ride, his sister said.

But rent in Whistler, even when he lived in someone's closet, was too much. With his burgeoning carpentry skills, Racicot built a tree house on the side of a cliff, attached to trees.

"He stole all the materials, the wood, the nails, everything" from construction sites in Whistler
, said Myers.

Inside, there was room for a double bed and compartments for clothes. Outside, he had a small grill. He covered the Seussian house with a green tarp for camouflage.

He then built an addition for visitors — a platform with a tent — and when Myers visited the home, he asked about the slash marks through the tarp.

"Sometimes bears walk on the roof," Racicot told him. Myers slept little that week when he stayed with his friend.

Racicot had friends working in the village's numerous hotels where he'd go for a shower as the maids cleaned a room, then grabbed grub from the free continental breakfast, and exercised in the gym.

The tree house — as teens, Myers and Racicot had dreamed about building a treefort hotel that looked like the Ewok Village in the Star Wars movie "Return of the Jedi" — became synonymous with Racicot.

About 10 years ago, Racicot got into BASE jumping, which involves jumping with a parachute off buildings, cliffs, or bridges. He moved to Squamish, considered by many to be among the most important areas for BASE jumping in Canada, where he'd often start his day with a jump off the Stawamus Chief, a mountain 700 metres above Howe Sound where BASE jumping is legal.

"He was the chief of the Chief," said Philip Moessinger, a jumper who also learned under the tutelage of Racicot. "Everyone knows Treehouse in B.C."

Racicot jumped 969 times in his life, his sister said, with more than 500 jumps at the Chief, as it is known colloquially.

His peers say Racicot was one of the best all-around BASE jumpers in the world. He could also perform aerials and flew incredible distances with a wingsuit.

The sport is intoxicating, his friends say.

"You're literally flying," said Moessinger. "The feeling you get out of it, the joy, the high, is unbelievable. Treehouse felt that too."

Racicot was among the rarefied air of jumpers who were sponsored.

"He did it all, and did it all well and that made him impressive and unique among his peers," says Joe Putrino, who works for Apex BASE, a parachute company that sponsored Racicot.

On July 26, Moessinger and Racicot stood at the top of Chaserrugg mountain with the Swiss town of Walenstadt sitting below. The sun shone down that afternoon as wispy clouds rolled by. The pair had just jumped off the mountain that morning and were back up to fly another line in their wingsuits — Racicot's suit bearing a giant image of his dog, Taco, on the front. They planned to soon meet three other friends from Canada for a jumping tour around Europe.

Moessinger jumped first with Racicot in tow. They flew between three-to-10 metres off the steep ground. At one point, Racicot flew underneath his friend and took the lead.

"It was a great flight," Moessinger said.

They came out of the flight line, the exit named "Fatal Attraction" where the terrain drops off, and the point at which they would fly toward the landing area where they would pull their parachutes.

Racicot didn't pull his parachute.

"He just disappeared in the trees," Moessinger said as he fell silent.

No one knows what happened to Racicot in that flight.

His death has left a void in the jumping community around the world and with his family in Ottawa. His father, a devout Baptist, And so proud, I bet.
struggles with his son's loss. Prayer usually helps, but it didn't that first night without his boy.

"The most difficult time I had was the night I heard Mike had died," his father said through tears. "I believe that we pray for people while they're alive and we make our decisions while we live. That night, as I was going through the names of our family members and friends and got to Mike, I realized I didn't have to pray for him anymore."
Life is a banquet and most poor suckers are starving to death.

KiloHotel likes this post.
User avatar
gardengirl
Walks on Forum Water
 
Posts: 12888
Likes: 685 posts
Liked in: 662 posts
Joined: Mar 23rd, 2006, 1:01 pm
Location: Wrong side of the tracks.

Re: Why is this a story?

Postby Urban Cowboy » Dec 30th, 2018, 1:06 pm

Well it's just as valid of a story as the one about deer carcasses, found in an area overrun with deer who regularly get hit by vehicles, and must be disposed of somehow.
“Most people do not listen with the intent to understand. Most people listen with the intent to reply.” -Stephen R. Covey

KiloHotel likes this post.
User avatar
Urban Cowboy
Lord of the Board
 
Posts: 4392
Likes: 4646 posts
Liked in: 6455 posts
Joined: Apr 27th, 2013, 2:47 pm

Re: Why is this a story?

Postby dirtybiker » Dec 30th, 2018, 1:22 pm

Except for the theft of some building materials, maybe even scraps needing
to go for site clean up.
Sounds that he found a way to live his life, by his terms.

We should all be so brave.
"Don't 'p' down my neck then tell me it's raining!"
dirtybiker
Guru
 
Posts: 7126
Likes: 7573 posts
Liked in: 3365 posts
Joined: Mar 8th, 2008, 6:00 pm
Location: Central OK

Re: Why is this a story?

Postby LTD » Dec 30th, 2018, 1:25 pm

died doing what he loved and got by on the bare essentials probably lived with a lot less stress than most of us do
LTD
Lord of the Board
 
Posts: 4095
Likes: 2852 posts
Liked in: 3248 posts
Joined: Mar 31st, 2010, 2:34 pm

Re: Why is this a story?

Postby Leifer » Dec 30th, 2018, 3:22 pm

I feel bad for his family, home owners/builders he stole from, and the hotel (he also stole from) and hotel staff who had to clean up after him.

No doubt someone else will have to go in and clean up his makeshift shack and look after his dog.

I have no problem with people living how they want to....just as long as they make their own way in the world. I have a old friend who lives a similar lifestyle. The difference is he works (all be it sporadically) and supports himself without being a burden on others (or the system).
Two essential strategies for success.

1) Never reveal all you know
2)

4 people like this post.
User avatar
Leifer
Board Meister
 
Posts: 596
Likes: 238 posts
Liked in: 966 posts
Joined: Nov 19th, 2007, 8:43 pm
Location: West Kelowna

Re: Why is this a story?

Postby Bunnyhop » Dec 30th, 2018, 10:30 pm

I feel so sad for his family. His life of “adventure” had little chance of ending well.

Stealing materials to build his treehouse and sneaking in to hotels for a free shower and breakfast isn’t admirable though. Pay your own way like the rest of us hardworking schmucks.

KiloHotel likes this post.
Bunnyhop
Generalissimo Postalot
 
Posts: 707
Likes: 1248 posts
Liked in: 501 posts
Joined: Dec 13th, 2009, 6:47 pm

Re: Why is this a story?

Postby Omnitheo » Jan 1st, 2019, 11:50 am

*removed*
Last edited by ferri on Jan 4th, 2019, 9:18 am, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Off Topic
"The Charter of Rights and Freedoms protects all Canadians, every one of us, even when it is uncomfortable."
- Justin Trudeau

3 people like this post.
User avatar
Omnitheo
Guru
 
Posts: 5228
Likes: 7960 posts
Liked in: 4153 posts
Joined: Jul 19th, 2011, 9:10 am

Re: Why is this a story?

Postby Gixxer » Jan 3rd, 2019, 2:35 pm

Whats the TL;DR version?
Gixxer
Lord of the Board
 
Posts: 4498
Likes: 904 posts
Liked in: 1547 posts
Joined: Jul 26th, 2007, 7:24 am

Re: Why is this a story?

Postby twobits » Jan 3rd, 2019, 6:50 pm

*removed*
Last edited by ferri on Jan 4th, 2019, 9:18 am, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Response to removed post.
Do not argue with an idiot. He will drag you down to his level and beat you with experience.

The problem with the gene pool is that there is no lifeguard.
twobits
Guru
 
Posts: 6937
Likes: 944 posts
Liked in: 3448 posts
Joined: Nov 25th, 2010, 8:44 am
Location: GPS says Dead Elbow Utah. Think I'm lost


Return to B.C.

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: CommonCrawl [Bot] and 1 guest