On September 11, 2001, Lt. Heather “Lucky” Penney had one harrowing mission: bring down United 93. She took off from Andrews Air Force Base, but without weapons. No missiles, machine guns, etc.; she would have to ram into the commercial airliner to save American lives.
“I would essentially be a kamikaze pilot,” she said. The 13th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks has come and gone; we will always remember those who have died. But this story of a fighter pilot who was willing to sacrifice herself to save others is surely worth the read. For years, she never gave her account of what happened; she later escorted Air Force One back to D.C. Now, she’s a mother of two daughters and the head of the F-35 program at Lockheed Martin (via Washington Post):
Because the surprise attacks were unfolding, in that innocent age, faster than they could arm war planes, Penney and her commanding officer went up to fly their jets straight into a Boeing 757.
Written by Matt Vespa
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