Capt. Chesley Sullenberger is celebrating the 5th anniversary of the ‘Hudson Miracle” on Wednesday. In 2009 he saved 155 people by bringing US Airways Flight 1549 to an astounding landing on the Hudson River. The crash was caused after a flock of geese crammed the engines of the plane.
As a matter of fact, Capt. Chesley not only saved lives, but also created an opportunity for new lives to be born. He celebrates the 5th anniversary along with 10 babies born after the incident to passengers of the fateful flight.
The retired pilot, who has formed strong bonds with the survivors of the crash, got the opportunity to meet five of those kids Tuesday in a gratifying reunion on Katie Couric’s show, “Katie”.
“These are special, special kids…kids that maybe wouldn’t have been born otherwise. It makes it all very real,” Sullenberger said.
Also noteworthy is that Sullenberg’s heroics not only saved lives but mended broken relationships as well. Karin Rooney who was on the plane with her boyfriend said the two were having problems but the shaking experience brought them closer together. The two married the following year and they now have an 8-month old baby who also appeared on the show.
Sullenberger is now a best-selling author and has received praise from presidents Barack Obama and George Bush. The 62-year-old Hudson hero became an advocate for air safety and joined the Journal of Patient Safety to help in bringing attention to the estimated 200,000 deaths caused each year as a result of medical errors.
The “Hudson Hero” confessed that he went through “the most harrowing three minutes” of his life which made him suffer horrific thoughts and insomnia. He retired in 2010.
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