A 49-year-old man has died in a skydiving incident northwest of Edmonton.

RCMP said the incident happened around 7 p.m. Saturday, north of Stony Plain.

Friends have identified the man as John Scott, an accomplished skydiver and instructor with Eden North.

Witnesses told CTV News they believe that he made a wrong move that caused him to hit the ground.

Co-worker Lyal Waddell said Scott was having trouble breathing after the fall and was rushed to hospital.

He said he heard Scott had died from the hospital around 8:30.

“It will leave a big hole in our community. It’s pretty tough,” he sighed.

Waddell explained that Scott had already done three tandem jumps that day.

He was also an instructor for the Canadian Army SkyHawks Demonstration Parachute Team.

“He was sort of at the extreme end of capabilities and teaching people what to do.

“The man was an impressive guy.”

Scott’s cousin, Brenda Lachance, said she was shocked when she heard the news early Sunday morning.

“He was a free spirit and he died doing what his passion was, what he loved,” she said through tears.

Scott was born in Newcastle, New Brunswick but spent a lot of time travelling and participating in the sport he loved.

According to Eden North’s website he had been jumping since 1984.

A similar incident was reported at Eden North in 2007 after a parachute was fully deployed but the jumper did not have time to properly flare.

Police said an autopsy has been planned.

With files from Jeff Harrington