Manitowoc Woman Recalls First Hijacking 50 Years Ago

Discussion in 'Blogstand' started by sobore, May 2, 2011.

  1. sobore
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    sobore Gold Member

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    Sunday marks the 50th anniversary of the first hijacking of a U.S. airliner and a Manitowoc woman was right in the middle of it all.
    Inez McDermott grew up in Manitowoc with her eye on the sky. "Back then it was every girl in the country wanted to be a stewardess," she says.
    After graduating high school she took a breath of courage and left home. "I decided I would go to New York where the airlines were and I wasn't coming back until I was a stewardess," says Inez. "So I actually left here at 19 with my little bag of money and off I went."
    Inez interviewed with three different airlines and finally landed a job with National Airlines in 1959. Two years later, on May 1, 1961 her schedule had her in Florida. "That morning I spoke to Betty Gayles and I was very nervous that morning," recalls Inez. "I said, 'I don't know Betty, something is going to happen'. True."
    Preparing for a flight from Miami to Key West, Inez noticed a passenger that made her feel uneasy. He was unshaven and wore sunglasses. "He came on, he was very abrupt, spoke excellent English and said, 'What's your name?' I said, 'Miss Harlow.' He said, 'Oh,' and went to the back and I didn't like him."

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