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The stricken A320 Airbus–originally bound for St. Thomas and now limping back to Charlotte, North Carolina—shuddered like a bird suffering a mortal wound, then shook violently. Shouting and screaming from the rear of the plane drowned out the prayer of the older couple seated in front of them, “Our Father, Who art in Heaven, Hallowed be Thy Name, Thy kingdom come—”
Lisa, Ethan’s wife, sobbed beside him. Across the aisle his eighteen year-old son, Josh, yelled, “Dad–are we going to crash?”
“No, son,” he lied. “We-are-not-going-to-crash.”
Megan, his sixteen year-old daughter, seated next to her brother, screamed, “The engine is on FIRE!”
Lisa clung to the seat arms so hard her fingers turned white and whimpered, “We’re all going to die–just like Greg,” then moaned, “I don’t want to die—”
Ethan reached for his wife’s hand as a thunderous explosion shook the plane and slammed him against the window, knocking breath out of him . . .
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