André Hediger is a Swiss paraglider who has caught the attention of thousands of people, in and out of the world of air sport. Hediger's career took off when he became the world paragliding champion in 2000, but the truth is that this is not the most interesting thing in his history.
The paraglider André Hediger has always been considered as someone directly associated with the adventure, being a man who had a great interest in being able to conquer the skies until he became known under the name "the craftsman of the air", and who lives in Argentina since 1999.
Hediger was born in Montreux, a city located in Switzerland near Lake Leman, which is well known for its riverbank that has incomparable beauty. In this city he lived until he was 7 years old, then moved to Italy and then to Zurich, where he grew up.
Known by the local press as "the birdman", he managed to build a natural balcony where Aboriginal people lived with eagles, understanding that it would be a perfect space to enjoy high-altitude sports.
In 1985 he began working in a windsurfing factory, catamarans, parachutes and sailboats, where he obtained the knowledge he needed to be able to start working on his first prototypes of a paragliders.
As time went on, André Hediger consolidated as an experienced paragliding development test pilot within the helvetica company Advance (in which he continues to do freelance work) and also worked as a test pilot for the Swiss Free Flight Federation. In these jobs he gained a lot of experience.
Currently he also worked as a flight instructor and was in charge of reviving the aeroclub of La Cumbre, which is where he has lived since 1999, managing to set up his own workshop in which he is responsible for repairing air sports equipment.
Having a great experience and hundreds of flight hours, it's no surprise that André Hediger has a good amount of prizes under his wings.
Among the most important prizes we can highlight:
· World paragliding runner-up in 1991 and 1996
· World paragliding champion in 2000
Of these it should be noted that the World Cup of Paragliding 2000 was composed of a series of competitions that took place in Brazil, Spain, Portugal, France and Austria, ending in France. It is a pretty big, important competition.
By participating in the 2007 World Cup, André Hediger competed for the first time as an Argentine and not as a Swiss, as he did so for his children, who are Argentinian.
In 1992 he was working on courses for improvement and instructors in Switzerland, where he met "La Bettina". She was a paraglider of Swiss parents, with whom they immediately hooked up. It was she who invited him to meet Argentina in 1995, specifically to get to know La Cumbre, showing him the aeroclub that had been abandoned.
When they arrived in Argentina they lived in Huerta Grande, in a house located in Rincón Suizo (very close to the Cordoba mountains) where they put up the old shop. The idea they both had was to be in Argentina during the summer and the European summer in the Alps.
However, in 1997 a tragedy occurred and "Bettina" died when he had an accident while paragliding when they were in Switzerland. Two years after that terrible accident, André had an accident in the same place and in the same way, he was left in a coma.
Once he woke up from the coma, André didn't quite know what to do with his life, finding himself completely disoriented and really sad. It was here that he came up with the idea of returning to La Cumbre.
That's when he decided to go back to Argentina and make a new story there. Thus, he came to this country in south America and continued to work on the Aeroatelier that had begun with Bettina. There he followed the abandoned aeroclub and imagined that place as his new home, where he could enjoy fresh air, mountain, sun, tranquility and the possibility of flying.
He went on with his life and with his next partner he had two children, who have become his great joy in following his path. Little Lua was born when he was named world champion and Tiago was born later, who now flys out many times with his father.
He is now organizing to spend more time with his children and devote more time to them, As André Hediger recently commented.