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Her unknown, unborn baby also survived.

First the main chute failed — at 10,000 feet — then the reserve chute wouldn’t open.

“I heard a snap and I started spinning and I didn’t know why. I didn’t know what to do to fix it. I didn’t know how to make it stop”, Richardson said.

At that moment on 9Oct05, Shayna Richardson, 21, started praying.

It is estimated that she hit the ground, face first, at 50 mph.

She said the impact ‘eggshelled’ her face and broke her pelvis and fibula. What she did not know, however, was that she was 2 weeks pregnant at the time of the accident.

Richardson said that she would not have jumped had she known she was pregnant.

After surgery and 16 days in hospital, both Richardson and her baby are recovering and Richardson hopes to return to skydiving after the birth, which is expected in June.

[Hilary White,, 14Dec05, Joplin]