Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Graying Heroes

I heard this story on the radio today when I was driving over to Cartridge World, and thought it was such fun, I wanted to share it. I found it on through Rush Limbaugh.

It's about how Bob Hayden, a 65-year-old former police commander and his fellow, unnamed passenger, a retired US Marine, helped flight attendants subdue two men who had terrorized passengers on a three-hour Minneapolis-to-Boston flight Saturday night with their weird behavior. "Your lives are going to change today forever," one of the disrupters was reported to have said early on in the flight.

Hayden told to the flight attendant he was a retired policeman and offered to assist in subduing the men, at an agreed upon a signal. But when he stood up and looked around for someone to help, all the younger men looked away, refusing to make eye contact. Finally he asked a gray-haired fellow sitting nearby "if he was up to it." The man's reply was, "Retired captain. USMC."

"You'll do," Hayden said.

Thus as the plane was about to land, and the wild men leapt up shouting, the flight attendant gave the signal, and Hayden and his marine bounded down the aisle to subdue the guy and his brother. For this the two grandfathers "received an ovation from fellow passengers." Hayden's wife Katie, however, (also on the flight) was more occupied with the book she was reading than with her husband's heroics.

When a scandalized fellow passenger asked how she could just sit there reading during all this, Katie Hayden said, "Bob's been shot at. He's been stabbed. He's taken knives away. He knows how to handle those situations. I figured he would go up there and step on somebody's neck, and that would be the end of it. I knew how that situation would end. I didn't know how the book would end."

I love it! You can read the whole story here.