Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Local News

July 31, 2013

Up, up and away

Jon and Jenny Cole look back at 2 years in Chinese circus

It’s a unique gig, getting shot out of a cannon. Want to make it even more unique? Do it in China. At the world’s largest permanent circus.

That’s exactly what 28-year-old Jon Cole did for two years. In June 2011, he left with his wife, Jenny, and their two young kids to become the first human cannonball to ever perform the act in China’s history.

At the same time, he be-came one of fewer than 10 human cannonball acts in the world.

How did the Peru native end up on the far side of the world? It’s a winding road that led him to China and into the history books, and it begins in Peru — the self-proclaimed “Circus Capital of the World.”

When he was 5 years old, his parents decided against signing Jon up for baseball. Instead, they enrolled him in the Peru youth circus as a kiddy clown.

At the age of 7, Jon started performing actual circus acts and eventually worked his way up to the flying trapeze.

“I loved it. My older sister kind of fell out of it, but I was the kid who was totally into it,” he said.

Jon was a first-generation performer, and he meshed with the circus scene. After high school, he went to Indiana Wesleyan University, where he received a degree in physical and health education.

Right after graduating from college, The Flying Pages offered him a spot in their flying trapeze act. Jon jumped at the chance and hit the road for the next year traveling with the group.

Then it was back to Peru. Jon landed a job at Carroll High School teaching P.E. and gym. He also started dating Jenny while they were both working as coaches at the Peru amateur circus. They married after he stopped performing with The Flying Pages.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local News
  • NWS - KT082314 - Gaming revenues - PIC 1 Gaming revenues rush over border as Illinois expands slots INDIANAPOLIS – Beer and barbecue aren’t the only draws to Daddy-O’s Bar & Grill in the small town of Paris, Illinois, 15 miles from the Indiana border. The prospect of winning pulls in customers, as well.Since the neighborhood bar installed five vide

    August 23, 2014 4 Photos

  • U.S. 31 lane closure Monday The Indiana Department of Transportation will close the northbound right lane of U.S. 31 from the S.R. 931 flyover bridge at mile marker 156.0 north one-half mile to the 156.5 mile marker on Monday. Construction activities will begin at 7:30 a.m. The

    August 23, 2014

  • Camper rally 01 Dozens visit Peru for first vintage camper rally PERU — Mike Blackowiak said he’s used to creating some buzz when he pulls into a campground. But, then again, turning heads is one of the perks of owning an old-school 1963 Cree camper like his. “New campers — yeah, they’re nice, but you pull into a

    August 22, 2014 3 Photos

  • Floodgate trouble drops Lake Shafer by 20 inches A malfunction at a northern Indiana reservoir's dam has dropped the popular lake nearly 20 inches below its normal water level.

    August 22, 2014

  • Serena Youth Center seeking donations to furnish house The Serena Youth Center is looking for area businesses, churches and individuals to help furnish the center for the young women who will be living there. Kokomo’s first center for young women, ages 18 to 25, will soon open its doors, and the house on

    August 22, 2014

  • Water Color Class 06 Visual arts classes inspire adults to be creative Editor's note: This is one of several stories that will be published Sunday about how various groups are sharing their artistic talents with others. Eighty-six-year-old Dixie Bennett walked around her makeshift classroom inside Artworks Gallery Thurs

    August 22, 2014 3 Photos

  • Driver in Thursday crash cited for six traffic violations Kokomo police gave the driver of the jeep involved in Thursday afternoon’s crash on North Ohio Street six citations, including driving with a suspended driver’s license.

    August 22, 2014

  • 8 inches of overnight rain floods part of Indiana INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Heavy rains that dumped more than half a foot of rain overnight in some places triggered widespread flooding Friday in some central and northern Indiana counties. State police closed a section of Interstate 69 in both directions

    August 22, 2014

  • Purdue Security Video Purdue posts disputed video of photographer online

    Purdue University has posted online a surveillance video that college newspaper editors say shows a staff photographer being roughed up by police near where a student had been fatally shot and stabbed. Purdue posted the vi

    August 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Sobriety checkpoints planned for today in Kokomo The Howard County Sheriff Department announced deputies will conduct a multi-jurisdictional enforcement checkpoint targeting impaired drivers in Howard County today. Officers from the Kokomo Police Department and troopers from the Indiana State Polic

    August 22, 2014

Latest news
Featured Ads
Only on our website
AP Video
Furry Roommates: Dorms Allowing Cats and Dogs Chase Rice Defends Bro-Country 'Jersey Shore Massacre' Pokes Fun at MTV Series Raw: Wash. Mudslides Close Roads, Trap Motorists DC's Godfather of Go-Go Honored Ukraine Calls Russian Convoy a 'direct Invasion' Girl Meets Her 'one in the World' Match Coal Gas Boom in China Holds Climate Risks Japan Landslide Rescuers Struggle in Heavy Rain Raw: Severe Floods, Fire Wrecks Indiana Homes Endangered Red Wolves Face Uncertain Future Raw: Russian Aid Convoy Arrives in Ukraine Okla. Policeman Accused of Sex Assaults on Duty Dominican Republic Bans Miley Cyrus Concert Raw: Israeli Air Strike in Gaza Raw: Bodies of MH17 Victims Arrive in Malaysia Attorney: Utah Eatery Had Other Chemical Burn
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Obituaries