Danny Boyle leads tributes to Olympic stuntman after wingsuit crash death
PUBLISHED: 11:08 16 August 2013 | UPDATED: 11:29 16 August 2013
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Olympic mastermind Danny Boyle has paid tribute to the opening ceremony James Bond stuntman who died in a wingsuit crash in the Swiss Alps.
Former British Army officer Mark Sutton, 42, who spectacularly parachuted into the Olympic Stadium dressed as 007, died after hitting a mountain ridge during the freefall from a helicopter near Mont Blanc this week.
Mile End resident Danny Boyle said it had been an “honour” to work with Mr Sutton.
“In a brilliant partnership with Gary Connery they made the stadium gasp at the Opening Ceremony in London 2012 and left indelible memories for people from all walks of life all over the world,” the acclaimed director said.
“They were a delight to work with and after each practice jump brought their cheery, carefree smiles into the stadium control room.
“Mark was also a gentle and thoughtful man. On behalf of everyone in the show we were all honoured to have him worked with him and to have known him as a friend and professional,” he added.
Swiss police said Mr Sutton died after jumping from a height of around 3,300metres.
Wingsuits are special jumpsuits which increase the surface area of the body and act like a parachute wing, allowing users to glide through the air at high speeds before landing via parachute.
Sebastian Coe, who chaired the London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games, described Mr Sutton’s death as “desperately sad news”.
“I was shocked to hear the desperately sad news,” Lord Coe said. “The cast and volunteers in London became a very close-knit family.
“Mark was a consummate professional and team player. He will be widely missed.”