IU students skydive with teddy bears to raise spirits of Riley kids

FRANKFORT, Ind. – Over 80 Indiana University students took to the skies this weekend and they brought some teddy bears along for the ride, all to benefit the kids at Riley’s Hospital for Children.

The Indiana University Dance Marathon’s Committee members teamed up with an organization called Canopies for Kids to make the stuffed animals the “the bravest bears in the world,” so they could deliver them to “the bravest kids in the world” at Riley.

Before jumping the 13,000 feet, the skydiving students wrapped the bears in plastic to protect them from germs and strapped them to their harnesses.

In addition to the bears, Canopies for Kids will also provide a financial contribution to Riley. Bob Dougherty, the owner of Skydive Indianapolis, says it’s the third year that they’ve worked with the organization.

“It’s an awesome program, and we love the opportunity for our skydivers to get to give back,” said Dougherty

IUDM is the second largest student-run philanthropy in the country. In its 26-year history, the organization has raised over $24 million. $3.9 million of that amount was raised in 2015. The dance marathon itself happens in November with over 3,000 students participating.