The day of the most mysterious hijacking – level 3


On November 24, 1971, a man in a dark suit, tie, light coat, and with a briefcase in his hand came to the lobby of the international airport in Portland, USA. He said he was Dan Cooper. He bought a one-way ticket for a short half-hour flight to Seattle and boarded the plane.

The plane carried 37 passengers and 6 crew members. Shortly after the take-off, Cooper approached a flight attendant and handed her a note that said, “I have a bomb in my briefcase. I will use it if necessary. I want you to sit next to me. You are being hijacked!“

The flight attendant obeyed, but she wanted to see the contents of the briefcase. As soon as he showed her the bomb, the flight attendant no longer had doubts. She sent this information into the cockpit with the Cooper’s demands. Cooper wanted $200,000 and four parachutes.

Then the plane landed in Seattle. After getting the money and parachutes at the Seattle airport, Cooper let all the passengers go, and kept only 2 pilots, a flight engineer, and one flight attendant on board. He ordered them to fly to Reno, Nevada. He told all the crew members to stay in the cockpit.

It was a dark night with low clouds and strong winds. At one point, the pilots felt that the plane shook, which could be caused by the opening of the back door of the plane through which Cooper wanted to jump out.

When the plane landed in Reno, people found out that the plane was really empty. Immediately after the landing, many people from the FBI and the army began looking for Cooper. Many people also thought that he couldn’t survive the jump in such conditions as the weather was bad. Cooper had also used an instructional parachute that didn’t work properly.

Despite an extensive search, Cooper and his dead body were never found.

Difficult words: hijack (to take control of a plane or a vehicle by force), flight attendant (someone who serves food and drinks and helps passengers on a plane), obey (to do what somebody wants), cockpit (the area in a plane where the pilot sits), parachute (a thing which people use when they jump out of a plane), as (because), despite (opposite to what people think will be the truth).

What do you think happened to Dan Cooper after he jumped out of the plane?


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