An 80-year old woman landed a plane after her husband suffered a fatal heart attack–while the plane was low on gas and with no flying experience. I came across the audio last night and was transfixed the entire time.
Here’s the harrowing audio (it’s long, but wow, is it tense):
“I can’t even tell her how to run a computer, let alone land a plane,” Richard Collins, 55, told ABCNews.com. “It was a very trying time. I thought I was going to lose them both.”
John and Helen Collins were flying from Florida to Wisconsin on Monday. John had not been feeling well on Thursday and the couple’s son James Collins, also a pilot, wanted to meet them in Rome, Ga., where they were stopping, to fly the rest of the way.
Here’s an interview with Captain Sully that also goes into how the airport assisted her.
They sent a plane up to meet her and had a pilot on the ground coaching her. They did some practice rounds, and in the end she finally had to land because she was running out of fuel. She landed hard and was injured, but nothing really serious.
I’m not sure I could have done this. I can’t imagine calmly landing a plane when something like that happened.