Love is in the Air: The Skydiving Love Story of Erica & Tyler

Saturday, February 13, 2021

Erica Dalziel and Tyler Briggs have spent almost every day together since meeting at Wisconsin Skydiving Center in 2017. They were instant friends who swiftly fell in love, and this September they’ll be married. 

 

We are thrilled to not only have Erica and Tyler as part of our WSC family but to also serve as the forever answer to the question they’ll be asked until they’re gloriously old and gray – “Where did you meet?” 

 

This is their sweet story.

Erica and Tyler holding hands while on a jump
Erica and Tyler holding hands while on a jump. Photo by Joel Graves.

Good Kids

Erica playing basketball when she was a kid
Erica dominating the hardwood when she was a kid.

Erica and Tyler were quintessential midwestern kids. They loved the outdoors, were athletic and competitive, and worked hard in pursuit of a stable future. 

 

Erica knew from childhood that she would choose a high-impact profession. True to form, she earned her degree in Health Care Administration and Management from University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire and, following graduation, began working with senior adults. (Secret dream job, though? Professional basketball player. Wicked.)

 

Tyler – a born daredevil – was one of those kids who rode bikes “in a lot of places you shouldn’t ride bikes.” At age 12 he started riding motocross and in high school began racing. He continued on to Blackhawk Tech where he studied Industrial Maintenance and then jumped into a career in tech. He loves his job, but if all the stars had aligned, he’d no doubt be a pro motocross racer. 

 

So, not just good kids you guys, but cool kids.

Tyler's first Motocross race in 2005
Tyler’s first Motocross race in 2005.

 

First Flights

Tyler’s brother-in-law, Joel Graves – a WSC instructor and undeniable adrenaline junkie – was the one to introduce skydiving to the Briggs family. Skydiving was a common topic around the dinner table and they were all enthralled by Joel’s DZ stories. 

 

In 2009, as soon as he turned 18, Tyler booked his first tandem and invited the whole crew to cheer him on. His face on landing made it clear that Tyler had caught the bug and in the years that followed he made several more tandems.

Tyler First Tandem Skydive
Tyler first tandem skydive.

By the time Tyler started AFF in 2017, Erica was already a WSC regular. She and her best friend Erin had jumped in 2012 to celebrate college graduation and loved it. They immediately pledged to do another together. In 2016 they fulfilled their pact and, for Erica, it sealed the deal. She immediately started AFF. Her first solo was terrifying, but she stuck with it and that same year earned her USPA A License.

Erica after her check dive while earning her A License
Erica after her check dive while earning her A License.

Part of the Family

Tyler and Erica met on his initial day of AFF. He had a not so good first jump and landed off the DZ. After being retrieved and recombobulated, he went up again – this time under many more watchful eyes, including Erica’s. As a fairly new A-holder, she identified with the struggle (although, she points out, rather less pronounced) and took him under her wing. 

Erica and Tyler together before Tyler's check dive to get his A License
Erica and Tyler together before Tyler’s check dive to get his A License.

They became a pair. Erica helping Tyler progress, and he packing her parachute in gratitude. To some, this was standard DZ family behavior. Everyone at WSC is supportive – encouraging and empowering one another, and celebrating each other’s milestones. It’s our strong sense of community that makes WSC so special. 

 

But to others, their chemistry was obvious. A fellow friend even took a photo of them together, suspecting that they’d soon make it public. 

When they announced that they were dating three or four months after meeting, those same “some” were shocked and those “others” were delighted. Their hunches were right, and here’s proof.

Dirt dive before the couple started dating. Taken by Sean Kennedy; he posted it when they went Facebook official.
Dirt dive before the couple started dating. Taken by Sean Kennedy; he posted it when they went Facebook official.

Better Together

Erica and Tyler jumped every weekend all season long. She pursued 4-way relative work and videography, and he took to freefly and canopy progression. And whenever the load times aligned, they jumped together at sunset.  

 

She rode on the back of Tyler’s bike and went to his motocross races, and he watched Erica and her Dad run marathon after marathon. (Their goal is to run one in every state; 39 down, 11 to go.) In the offseason, they went snowboarding. 

 

Their relationship grew and their partnership blossomed.

 

Select a photo below to view in gallery mode.

Shared Agenda

As is the case with skydiving, communication is key to a successful relationship. 

 

A year and a half in, Tyler, Erica, and her two handsome dogs started living under one roof. They set up a badminton court in the backyard, gathered with friends and family often, and made their house a home.  

Erica and Tyler's first Christmas in their new house; Jordy is the blond dog, Xena is the black one.
Erica and Tyler’s first Christmas in their new house with their dogs – Jordy on the left and Xena on the right.

Dialogue about marriage came about naturally and they chose a ring together. In January, Tyler and Erica made it official, and in September they’ll host a small wedding in the gorgeous Great Smoky Mountains of Tennessee.  

 

Between now and then they’ll keep on keepin’ on, working all week and jumping all weekend. Erica currently has nearly 700 jumps and Tyler is just shy of 600. And under Jefferson’s big spring and summer skies, they’ll likely log another 100 or more each before beginning their next and most grand adventure.

 

On behalf of all of us at WSC, blue skies! We wish you love, freefall and laughter, happily ever after!

 

A lady smiles while in free fall during a tandem skydive at Wisconsin Skydiving Center near Milwaukee, WI

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