posted on Jan, 28 2017 @ 10:16 PM
Probably the most terrifying experience I've ever had flying was in a Mitsubishi MU-2 over the Gulf of Mexico in 1973. The PIC was an storied F-4
instructor pilot, combat vet (Vietnam) and Col. We got hammered so hard I just knew we wouldn't make it. At one point I even went back and talked
to my Mom who was in the back (and told her no matter what I loved her). It was the craziest S# I've ever seen! The wings of that MU-2 were flapping
like a bird. I've probably got 35,000,000 miles under my belt and I've never seen anything like that day!!!!! Softball sized hail, lightning every
second, 700' up/down drafts. I still can't even believe the airframe survived. Anything not strapped down was bouncing all over the cabin...it was
The pilots name was John Thomas, and he never lost his cool, not even for one second. I was the warm "body" in the right seat up front. We were in a
really bad way. WX radar was solid red and yellow (to the point were we eventually just turned it off for a while). No altitude was good, ATC was
totally on our side (they knew). We just got slammed around so hard it was absolutely unbelievable! (I still can't believe the windscreen held up,
but it did break...on the side no less). I think we got hit by lightning about 5 times. Instruments would flash, and come back up. It was just the
craziest flight ever even imaginable.
I swore I'd kiss the ground if we lived that day. We did, and I did kiss the ground right off the steps (in the pouring rain). I was never so glad
to be on the ground! I didn't think I could ever be scared flying...until that day. The plane was pretty heavily damaged (lots of big dents, both
props damaged), and I'm not sure if it was ever repaired. I know I never saw it again. (Company aircraft).
Despite it all, John never declared an emergency, never lost his cool and made it seem like it was just another day.
After that, I've always felt the F-4 jocks were some of the baddest dudes in the biz!
edit on 1/28/2017 by Flyingclaydisk because: (no reason given)