Shirley Jones to celebrate 80th birthday by skydiving - 13abc.com Toledo (OH) News, Weather and Sports

Shirley Jones to celebrate 80th birthday by skydiving

Posted: Updated:

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Inspired by a former president, Shirley Jones can't wait to jump into her birthday plans.

The Oscar-winning actress and singer says she'll take her very first skydive on Monday - her 80th birthday.

"That's something I wanted to do all my life," Jones said Friday. The inspiration to try comes from former President George H.W. Bush's jumps on several birthdays, including when he turned 85 in 2009.

"When I saw him do it I thought, 'Wow, if he can do this, I can,'" Jones said.

Jones, who starred in TV's "The Partridge Family" in the 1970s, gained fame with the 1950s film versions of the Broadway musicals "Oklahoma!" and "Carousel." She won an Oscar for the 1960 drama "Elmer Gantry."

She will be jumping in tandem with an instructor in Perris, a popular Southern California skydiving spot, according to her husband, comedian Marty Ingels.

Ingels was taken aback when she suggested it but has since come around, Jones said. Her children, not so much.

She quoted her oldest son, Shaun Cassidy, as saying, "Mom, what's the matter with you? Why would you want to do this at your age?"

Jones said she understands her sons' concerns, especially since she has arthritis, and she realizes that "anything like this can be dangerous."

But she's not deterred. It was either skydiving or the other top item on her to-do list, an African safari to satisfy the animal lover in her, Jones said.

Family members, including 12 grandchildren, are planning a big party Sunday, Jones said. She's also welcoming a friend she's known since they were in third grade back in a small town in Pennsylvania.

She's looking forward to the party but not what's being celebrated.

"I'm not very happy about" turning 80, she said. "The number scares me to death. I don't even like to say it. Eighty years old, it can't be."

Is skydiving a way to prove there's still more living to do?

"Yes, maybe," Jones said.

And for this actress, at least, it's apparently less worrisome than turning 80.

  • Top StoriesMore>>

  • Parents of 16-year-old shot and killed overnight speak out

    Parents of 16-year-old shot and killed overnight speak out

    Thursday, July 24 2014 6:49 PM EDT2014-07-24 22:49:30 GMT
    Searching for a suspect after police say someone gunned down a 16-year-old boy in cold blood. The teen's parents are pleading for help tracking down whoever killed their son.The shooting happened a little after three this morning near Collingwood and Nottingham. Police are reviewing cell phone records and other evidence in this case. They don't have a motive for the killing. "They found my son my heart my baby boy my pride they found my son dead on the streets of toledo" A father is distraug...
    Searching for a suspect after police say someone gunned down a 16-year-old boy in cold blood. The teen's parents are pleading for help tracking down whoever killed their son.The shooting happened a little after three this morning near Collingwood and Nottingham. Police are reviewing cell phone records and other evidence in this case. They don't have a motive for the killing. "They found my son my heart my baby boy my pride they found my son dead on the streets of toledo" A father is distraug...
  • T-Town Initiative tackles blight in East Toledo

    T-Town Initiative tackles blight in East Toledo

    The City of Toledo is taking steps to tackle blight. They’re calling it the T-Town Initiative. 13abc’s Tony Geftos was there Thursday as the program got underway in East Toledo.

    The City of Toledo is taking steps to tackle blight. They’re calling it the T-Town Initiative. 13abc’s Tony Geftos was there Thursday as the program got underway in East Toledo.

  • Apt. fire victims say they haven’t received community donations

    Apt. fire victims say they haven’t received community donations

    Thursday, July 24 2014 6:54 PM EDT2014-07-24 22:54:31 GMT
    It has been nearly two months since a fire destroyed Hidden Trails apartment complex in Monroe. 50 families lost their homes and all of their belongings. Now former tenants say they haven't received some of the donations made by the community to help them rebuild their lives. 13abc's McKenzie Kuehnlein has the story. Buffalo Wild Wings on Telegraph in Monroe, Michigan is donating 20% of purchases on Wednesday, July 30 to help the victims. Click here to print the certificate.
    It has been nearly two months since a fire destroyed Hidden Trails apartment complex in Monroe. 50 families lost their homes and all of their belongings. Now former tenants say they haven't received some of the donations made by the community to help them rebuild their lives. 13abc's McKenzie Kuehnlein has the story. Buffalo Wild Wings on Telegraph in Monroe, Michigan is donating 20% of purchases on Wednesday, July 30 to help the victims. Click here to print the certificate.

Area Events Calendar

See It, Shoot It, Send It!