Wash. woman calls mom from lifeboat

Wash. woman calls mom from lifeboat

OLYMPIA, Wash. -- It wasn't relief or comfort Susan Dunham felt when she heard her daughter, who was aboard the Seattle-bound plane when it plunged into the Hudson River on Thursday, was safe and sound.

It was much more, Dunham said.

"She called me from the lifeboat, in the water, from the lifeboat," Dunham said. "I picked it up, and I just heard, 'Mama! Mama! Mama!"'

Dunham's daughter, Michele Davis, was using another passenger's phone and could only say her plane had crashed, but she was OK. But the quick call wasn't enough to put her mother's mind at ease.

"I'm freaking out, and everybody around me said 'She's OK. She's OK.' It wasn't enough. Yes, she was OK, but my God," she said. "I lost it. I just sat there and sobbed."

Davis, 24, was flying from New York to Charlotte, N.C., then to Seattle to return to her Olympia home after visiting her boyfriend in New York. But just six minutes into the flight, she found herself bracing for a water landing.

"There was a big boom and then the smell of something burning, like a plastic burning smell," she said. "And then they told us to brace for impact, that they were going to try to land it.

"And as soon as the impact went through you, it (the plane) started filling up with water. I didn't know they had emergency doors in the front.

"I thought I wasn't going to see anybody I loved again," Davis said, crying.

During the emergency water landing, a number of the airliner's 155 passengers suffered minor injuries. One passenger broke both legs, a paramedic said.

 

 

 

 

 

 

While waiting outside in the 20-degree weather, several water-soaked passengers were struck with hypothermia. In all, 78 people were treated. Thankfully, Davis was not harmed.

As Dunham watched the incredible rescue on television, she found herself desperately searching for any sign of her daughter.

"I really wanted to be there," Dunham said. "I cannot believe my daughter was on that plane - I cannot believe my daughter is alive and she was in that plane."

Dunham was torn. She wanted her daughter to come home, but she also didn't want her daughter to fly again.

"I really just want her to come home," said Dunham, fighting back tears. "But I'm glad she's OK. That pilot is awesome."

U.S. Airways did offer to fly Davis to Seattle on Thursday night, but Davis refused, saying she's not ready to get on another plane. Davis is staying with her boyfriend for the night.