PITTSBURGH (KDKA/AP) — The pilot, crew and passengers who were on board a plane that made an extraordinary landing on the Hudson River are marking the fifth anniversary of that remarkable day.
Capt. Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger III, First Officer Jeff Skiles and some passengers who were on U.S. Airways Flight 1549 on Wednesday joined some of the ferry crews who rescued them from the cold waters on Jan. 15, 2009.
The flight had just taken off from LaGuardia airport when a flock of geese disabled the engines.
Sullenberger safely glided into a water landing.
All 155 passengers and crew members were rescued in what became known as the “Miracle on the Hudson.”
A local woman was on board flight 1549 working as a flight attendant.
Doreen Welsh sat down with KDKA’s Brenda Waters to relive that fateful day.
A lot has changed in her life since that day, she’s retired from the airline and enjoying a new profession, but will always have memories of the miracle on the Hudson.
Welsh said her life passed before her eyes that day.
“You don’t hear brace for impact, not many people can say they have heard that and live to tell the story later about it,” Welsh said.
Welsh now tells her story often. After going through therapy for a year, she retired from US Airways and began speaking professionally.
She calls her speech, “90 seconds to impact.”
Welsh talks about the flash backs she has almost daily and how the anniversary of the crash is so emotional, but says there is many life lessons in her message.
“To remember to tell people that you love them,” she says. “And we get down on people cause they are rude and selfish. I had some of the nicest strangers come to my aid that day, to give credit to people and get to know people. There are many wonderful people out there in the world.”
Welsh was injured that day, suffering a gash in her leg, but she says she continues to move forward, one day at a time.