Pilot stories that are almost too crazy to believe
- Phil Rasmussen was one of the few American pilots to shoot down a Japanese plane during the bombing of Pearl Harbor. He was flying an obsolete plane in his pajamas.
- In 1953, No Kum-sok, a North Korean pilot, defected to South Korea with his MiG-15. He received a $100,000 reward from the U.S. military thanks to Operation Moolah. This operation was an American-led effort to acquire a MiG aircraft.
- In 1956, Thomas W. Attridge’s jet was shot down during a test flight. It was later found that he had run into his own bullets that he had just fired.
- In 1958 a pilot ejected from his F-106 when it entered a flat spin. He was surprised to see it come out of the spin and land itself in a cornfield. Today the plane is known as the Cornfield Bomber
- Twelve cyanide pills were located in the cockpit of the Enola Gay. The crew was instructed to take these pills in case the bombing of Hiroshima went wrong.
- In 2009, two Northwest pilots lost their licenses when they overshot their destination by nearly 200 miles. They only realized their mistake when the flight attendant asked them about landing. Apparently, they were both on their laptops.
- Tex Johnson, a pilot who was demonstrating a Boeing 707, did a barrel roll. When the Boeing executive asked him what the heck he was he doing, he replied that he was selling airplanes. He went on to do another barrel roll.
- In 1994, a FedEx jet was hijacked by a disgruntled employee. In spite of the crew receiving multiple hammer blows, the pilot managed to fly the plane in such a way as to keep the hijacker off-balance. He even flew it upside down. Eventually the crew managed to stop the hijacker and land the plane.
- Scott O’Grady, the real pilot on which the movie Behind Enemy Lines was based, ended up suing FOX, because they depicted him as a soldier who disobeys orders and swears.