The Story of Mike, a Survivor at the Pentagon-Unproven!
Summary of eRumor:
This is an email from a man named Mike who wrote to his mother and others about his escape from the plane attack at the Pentagon in Washington D.C..
If anyone has first-hand information on the validity of this person and his story, please let us know.
It’s great to be alive! What a beautiful day to wake up and pray once again there is a God looking out for all of us. Even though some of us have lived on the edge our whole life, sometimes self induced; I want everyone to know that I have had an exciting fulfilling life. As we watch the symbol of America military strength still burn 24 hours later; let me just tell you what happened from ground zero plus 20 yards.
As you look at Pentagon wedge 4, where the airliner hit, you only have to look two offices to the right of the 4th corridor (spoke), outside E ring, and third floor to understand where I was just 5 minutes before the crash. At the moment of the crash I was in my office in D ring just on the other side of the corridor from the crash site.
Between 0830 and 0935, I was briefing BG Edmunds in her office on three Army weapon systems. As you recall we are trying to recapitalize 21 weapon systems for 16.5 billion dollars, trying to do what is right by either new production, overhaul, or selective upgrades. During my briefing we were interrupted by her XO telling us that an aircraft had hit the WTC. My general had remarked about bad weather and mechanical failure. And of course as a pilot, it was easy to tell it was VFR and that any prudent pilot would do everything possible to miss that building, weather they had mechanical failure or a gun pointed at their heads. I went back to briefing her, then about 15 minutes later, both the XO and the DPTY Director came in and said another plane hit the WTC and this time it was on tape. We of course went to go look at her T.V. and could tell right away this was another KHOBAR towers. (missed that one by a couple of days). Additionally made a remark “could you imagine if you saw an airline come at us right out this window. The DPTY Director said something to effect “I don’t even want to think about that.” BG Edmunds told me to go back to her office to finish the briefing because I still had one more system to brief and she had a meeting elsewhere at 0930. After the briefing I asked her for some briefing notebooks I gave her earlier and took what I needed back to my office.
On the way back, I remarked to our DPTY about Tom Clancy’s book Executive Orders about a packed 747 w/ TNT hitting the Capitol during a Statement of the Union address w/ the whole government in one spot. She remarked about a book she read w/ a similar plot and went into the ladies restroom.
A minute later I was talking to my boss at FT Belvoir, who asked how the briefings went and if I heard about WTC. This time I was joking and said “at least I’m on D ring (next to the outside ring) and we had a window unlike our old office I could bust.” Hung up the phone.
One minute later around 0940, we heard the explosion, and then the shudder. I grabbed my keys and ran out to the corridor. Looked to my left where I just was 5 minutes earlier, saw black smoke, fire, and hurt people running for their lives.
Problem was — automatic doors starting closing, smoke was filling the corridor, and you couldn’t see or breath any more. We kept the door open as long as possible, ran downstairs, and then went outside into the middle court. By the time we got there, people were already there seriously hurt. I felt real bad and went back into the building on the ground floor between D and E corridors. After about 5 minutes I saw a gaping hole in the brick wall and yelled if someone was in there. Took another deep breadth and yelled again this time closer to the fire. It was hot. I could here voices screaming. Couldn’t get in. Yelled for fire extinguishers, and medics. All the rescue people started escorting everyone one that was left (mostly military trying to help) out of the Pentagon. Most of the smart civilians who don’t get combat pay already left. Felt real bad not being able to help and that is what I’ll never forget.
Went to the subway only to find it shut down. Walked outside to join everyone else who was just in a daze. Most of us ended up on the freeway watching our offices burn down. It was then I first learned that my suspicion was correct that an airliner had hit us. Somebody had showed us his digital camera of AA acft parts burning. Earlier I had smelled and walked around in jet fuel while trying to help those guys in that burning room. After an hour I realized the only thing flying was loaded F-16s CAPs over D.C.
I managed to catch a ride w/ a news camera’s wife back to the mall where I keep my car during the day where I catch the subway into work.
Most of you know I’m not emotional, but drove to Kristen’s preschool, picked her up, kissed her and carried her out to the car. Some lady saw me and just said “there good to latch on every once in a while”
Everything else is history. Cindi at work was herded into a room with a couple of other military wives who work at her hospital. Of course she got real scared when the social workers started asking for information, etc. The boys were stuck at school and couldn’t find out any information. Then suddenly realized when they saw the Honda in the drive way that their dad was safe.
What’s even more tragic is Ted lost two coworkers on the AA 77. The army took the biggest hit, and I can’t even tell you how many army staff guys I know who got killed. All I know is I’m glad Ted was not on that plane and that plane didn’t hit me. Almost like Mark’s incident.
Anyway I’m starting to run out of lives. Think its time to retire and go fly for the airlines. However, even that is not a safe occupation.
I know this country is strong. I know the military is strong. We all have a strong families and network of friends, and I’m sure we will all get through this. And if required kick some butt because somebody is not playing fair…. Love, Mike