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Navy veteran, talented performer Jade White follows heart, joins circus

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Posted at 7:05 AM, Jan 26, 2022
and last updated 2022-01-26 16:54:40-05

LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — High-stakes and high-risk are familiar phrases for many of our servicemen and women. But sometimes our veterans can take it a bit further.

In this week’s Veterans Voice, we introduce you to Jade White—one of the valley’s most talented circus performers who got her life going in the Navy.

"I decided to join the Navy on a whim,” said Jade White. “I had the idea and then, two weeks later, I was in boot camp. So, it happened real fast.”

She joined the Navy in 2009 and spent her five years in the service as an air traffic controller. As she found out, life is very much a balancing act.

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“Air traffic control is a stressful job,” said White. “And I needed to find a hobby to release all of my frustrations. And it turned out to be a circus.”

Her time in the Navy gave her a strong desire to see the world. And that she did—performing in acts for other veterans and eventually became the first American in the Vietnamese circus.

“I think the Navy actually prepared me for circus life in a way, where you know everything can change at any last-minute,” she said.

A lot of her time is spent inside the dream factory—her backyard training center—where she sharpens every one of her routines.

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“I do tightwire, aerial dance, rola bola, acro, it’s so much fun and there’s so much possibility with it,” said White.

When asked about what’s next, she said the circus is a tough act to follow.

“Everybody told me I was crazy,” she said. “Everyone’s like, ‘What a stupid, bad idea.’ Go be an air traffic controller. But it’s not what I wanted and so I just needed to follow my heart and run away with the circus.”

If you have a veteran you would like us to feature, email us at veteransvoice@ktnv.com. Veteran's Voice is sponsored by Southern Nevada Ford Dealers.