Friday, January 15, 2010

Miracle on the Hudson: One-Year Anniversary

Today, January 15, 2010 marks the one-year anniversary of US Airways flight 1549 landing in NYC's Hudson River. 3,000 feet in the air, a flock of geese struck the plane causing it to lose all power. Captain Chelsea B. "Sully" Sullenberger and crew managed to land the plane in the frigid waters, saving all 155 passengers.

Visit here for the article describing the events one-year ago, A Miracle Near 34th Street

During times of crisis, character is defined. The character of the pilot is not in question; in fact, it is aptly defined as heroic. Captain Sullenberger, a former US Air Force Fighter Pilot guided the belly of the jet with the nose upward into the New Jersey side of the Hudson, which allowed the plane to stay afloat as designed.

Not only did the captain go down with the ship, Captain Sullenberger also walked the plane twice ensuring no one was left behind. A year ago, it was noted that a common trend among the passengers were audible prayers. Also during times of crisis atheists are converted.

Captain Sullenberger told CBS, "I think, in many ways, as it turned out, my entire life up to that moment had been a preparation to handle that particular moment." The passengers, crew and first responders came together again one year later.

As for reuniting a year later, Sully said, "It's like the best high school reunion you could imagine. We were just talking about that, who has come the farthest, who has changed the most. We have so much to be grateful for, and it's absolutely wonderful to once again have a chance to celebrate such a wonderful outcome with this great group of people."

Watch CBS News Videos Online

To complete the story of miracles and survival is the fairytale love story of passengers Ben Bostic, seat 20A, and Laura Zych, 17D.

Zych says her outlook on fate has changed, "I don't know what to call it. We were there for a reason. I have no idea why we survived, or why we found each other. But I believe it had to happen for a reason."

The couple's formal introduction had to wait for a March gathering in Charlotte, one of the monthly get-togethers the passengers nicknamed "celebration of life" reunions. The couple hit it off and talked long into the night that first evening. Nearly a year later, they are together and happily in love.

Visit here for the FAA Air Traffic Control communications for US Airways flight 1549, be advised the flight is referred to as "Cactus 1549."


1 comment:

Marie Anne said...

I really enjoyed reading about this and I caught the broadcast on a rerun while flipping channels the other day.

I thought it was done well, and was amazed at the cool-headed demeanor and professionalism exhibited by all during the near-tragic incident.