As Agent Sanchez, Frank and I argued with Trans Air’s representative, Captain Zukerman was listening to his First Officer call off the runway checklist and had been unaware of the people who had danced between life and death beneath the wheels of his plane.
“Tower, this is Trans Air Flight 200, requesting departure on runway 22E.”
“Roger that Trans Air. Your flight heading is zero zero nine, your vector corridors are clear, wind speed two knots coming in from the east. You are clear for take-off Trans Air Flight 200.”
Captain Zukerman put his foot to the pedal as his First Officer called off their ground speed – 40 – 60 – 80 – 100 – set flaps at 2 – Roger – flaps set at 2 – 120 – 140. “We’re up!” The jet lifted its nose soared into the air as if it were any other creature born to fly.
We made it back to the concourse area just in time to witness Trans Air Flight 200’s lift off for Israel.
“All we can do now, Margaret, is wait. And pray.”