F-16 Pilot Was Ready To Give Her Life On September 11th
The top trending article on WashingtonPost.com revisits the story of one incredible American hero.
It’s the story of Major Heather Penney, one of the first female fighter pilots allowed in the US Air Force.
She had her hand on the throttle of her F-16 with very clear orders–bring down United Flight 93, the fourth of the hijacked airliners.
But consider this: She had no ammunition. No missiles. Nothing. Talk about a different time–there were no armed aircraft standing by near Washington, D.C.
So bringing down the aircraft meant only one option–becoming a kamikaze pilot and flying her plane directly into the airliner.
And then there is this: Major Penney’s father was a pilot for United at the time. She had no idea if he was flying the plane she was ordered to bring down.
Of course, we now know a group of hero passengers on board Flight 93 brought the plane down in a field in Pennsylvania.
That doesn’t take away from the incredible woman and hero standing by to do what she had to on that day 14 years ago.