Recently on a morning radio show I was introduced to a hero from September 11, 2001. He was one of the pilots from Flight 93. That pilot was LeRoy W. Homer Jr. His wife Melodie Homer was on a local radio morning show.
She shared compelling memories and truths not immediately available in the wake of the 9/11 terrorist attacks (mostly because the evidence in the trial against Zacarias Moussaoui had to be completed before all info. could be released). She shared the story of the bravery of her husband and others on that flight that terrible day. She also shed light on some of the “fish stories” or dramatic interpretations that were woven into movies created about Flight 93 that were not quite accurate or plausible.
Melodie Homer shared how her husband was alerted about the other attacks that had taken place that morning–knowing this he evidently did something to the auto pilot of the plane so that the hijackers would not so easily be able to fly the aircraft. Some dramatic depictions of Flight 93 show the pilots being killed/eliminated immediately when the terrorists took over the cockpit. Mrs. Homer and the transcript from the cockpit tell a different tale. The terrorists, unable to make the plane do what they wished in manual mode, call for the pilots to be brought back to the cockpit to remedy the hindrance.The United Airlines Flight #93 cockpit voice recorder transcript also gives witness to the bravery of passengers who stormed the cockpit and thwarted the terrorists from fully carrying out their intended plan for this plane. Todd Beamer, Mark Bingham–two of the more mentioned passengers to lead the brave charge. On that day: straight, gay–African American, Latino, White–no racism, no homophobia… only united in a fight as Americans against terrorism.
Melodie Homer (who is also a nurse) started a foundation in her husband’s name which, in part, offers scholarships to individuals who want to learn how to fly but otherwise would not be able to afford flight school. The site also serves to ensure that this vital part of our history will not be forgotten.
We will always remember! And yet on this 10th anniversary of 9/11, our Country is at war within itself. It is my hope that all of us as Americans will remember the importance of United We Stand, and then leave the extremes of the partisan politics behind and work together to repair and reunite America.