My Plane Crashed but I wasn’t on it
My Plane Crashed but I wasn't on it... With all the talk about the recent disappearance of that Malaysia Airlines flight, it got me to thinking about an experience I had. On July 19, 1989 I was sitting with my Best Friend's family in Washington State not believing my eyes. My plane had crashed in Sioux City and it was all over the news.
It was a fantastic trip, I was by myself to see my best friend and her family. United was having a kid's special and my parents were able to send me from Maine to Seattle to visit for two weeks. I remember loving Washington and that Summer trip, I was almost 14 and living it up.
I remember my mother calling two days before I was to leave and a decision was made that I stay for another week. As giddy little teens we were ecstatic and I never asked why, I just thought my parents knew I was enjoying myself so much, why not stay?
We changed my airline ticket that day and continued on with our fun. After a day at the mall in Tacoma we came home to make dinner. My friend's mom turned the tv on and that's when we saw that my United flight 232 had crashed in Sioux City, Iowa. My heart practically stopped and my body felt every hair raise up in complete shock. Can you imagine how horrifying it would've been to be alone and scared on a doomed plane?
Flight 232 flew from Colorado bound for O'Hare in Chicago. I was supposed to connect to it in Colorado, head to Chicago and eventually landing in Boston. Of the 296 people on board, 111 died in the accident while 185 survived. The DC-10 lost all hydraulics only allowing it to make right hand turns. A DC-10 instructor just happened to be on board who offered his assistance. Captain Alfred C. Haynes became the Captain Sully of his day, credited with saving 111 people. He was the only pilot at the time with glider experience which was one of the main reasons so many survived.
I immediately ran to the phone to call my mom, she was well aware of the accident and it was then that she told me she had had a terrible dream that my plane crashed. She saw it cartwheel down the runway. It consumed her so much, she had called my friend's mom and devised a plan to have me stay a while longer. So, was this just a panicked mom worried therefore she had a dream of something on her mind or was it a view into the future meant to possibly save my life? Whatever it was, I am still here because of it. Needless to say, flying again was a bit unnerving but I remember thinking, if I was supposed to crash, I would've.
One more interesting note, years later in the early days of my Morning Show radio career I was offered an interview with Captain Hayes. When I told him I was supposed to be on the plane that day, he said "I'm glad we didn't meet that day for your sake." Here is the video of flight 232 caught on tape crashing and a news report about it.