The passengers of flight 93 fought back against their hijackers and stopped a fourth terrorist attack on a major US city on 9/11 (Picture: AP/NPS)Newly released accounts of 9/11 passengers aboard flight 93 detail the harrowing moment they sacrificed themselves to take back the plane.United Airlines flight 93 was a domestic flight intended for San Francisco International Airport before it was hijacked by four al-Qaeda terrorists on September 11, 2001.
Forty minutes into the flight, the four hijackers armed with box cutters and knives took control of the cockpit. Air traffic controllers heard what they thought were two mayday calls amid the sounds of a struggle – then the plane turned around and headed east toward Washington DC.Author Garret Graff’s new book, ‘The Only Plane in the Sky: An Oral History of 9/11,’ documents the heartbreaking final calls passengers made to their loved ones and the moment they decided to rush the hijackers.
The 33 passengers on the flight had already learned about the two planes that crashed into the World Trade Center, as well as the one that had flown into the Pentagon, and they were determined to stop a fourth devastating terror attack.
Just before the flight, passengers learned of the attack on New York City and the Pentagon (Picture: Getty Images)
Smoke comes out from the west wing of the Pentagon building after a plane crashed into the building and set off a huge explosion.
(Photo Getty Images)Graff’s book includes the phone calls from passengers to phone operators and loved ones before the plane crashed down in a field in Shanksville, Pennsylvania.AdvertisementAdvertisementPassenger Tom Burnett called his wife Deena, she said, and told her: ‘We’re waiting until we’re over a rural area.
We’re going to take back the airplane.’Deena pleaded with her husband not to do anything dangerous, but Tom responded: ‘If they’re going to crash this plane, we’re going to have to do something.’Lyzbeth Glick recounted the final time she spoke with her husband Jeremy Glick, a national judo champion aboard the plane.
She said: ‘Jeremy said there were three other guys as big as him, and they were going to jump on the hijacker with the bomb and try to take back the plane. He asked if I thought that was a good idea.’
There were 33 passengers and seven crew members aboard flight 93 (Picture: NPS)‘We debated a little bit.
He said that they were going to take a vote and asked what did I think he should do. I said, “You need to do it.”’‘He was joking, “I have my butter knife from breakfast.” Despite everything, he was able to be a little bit humorous. Then he said, “OK, I’m going to put the phone down. I’ll be right back.
I love you.”’
Remembering the incredible story of hero dogs on 9/11Lisa Jefferson, a Verizon Airfone operator, spoke of her conversation with passenger Todd Beamer, saying: ‘I could hear the commotion in the background. I heard the flight attendant screaming.’Beamer’s wife was pregnant their third child.