Grant Cardone was a passenger on that Delta flight that made an emergency landing at New York’s JFK airport after a flock of birds collided with the engine.
When he looked out the window he saw birds being sucked into the engine on the plane’s right side. The engine was completely blown out. He captured the frightening ordeal on his iPad camera.
INSIDE EDITION sat down with Cardone to hear his terrifying ordeal.
“That was the scariest thing I have ever done in my life,” said Cardone. “The plane shook. I thought we were coming down.”
Cardone told INSIDE EDITION, “These birds just came into the engine. All of a sudden, this grinding, excrutiating noise. It sounded like one of those mini cars just going through the right engine of the 757.”
Smoke filled the cabin. The passengers were terrified, but the pilot was cool as a cucumber. He kept a steely calm in his voice as he told the control tower that one engine was out.
The pilot said, “Delta 1063 has had an engine failure on the right engine. Declaring an emergency due to a bird strike.”
He was about to attempt an emergency landing. The lives of 179 passengers and crew were in his hands.
“Okay. We’re going to square it out to the right here, and we’ll head back in. And, just to let you know our stats for Delta 1063, we have 179 souls on board,” said the pilot.
It was a bumpy landing. Emergency crews were bracing for the worst, but the pilot pulled off a perfect emergency landing. The passengers burst into applause.
Now, that pilot is being hailed a hero by none other than Sully Sullenberger who famously pulled off the Miracle on the Hudson when he landed his plane safely in the Hudson river, after birds disabled his engines.
On CBS This Morning, Sullerberger said, “Well the captain and first officer would have been working very closely together during this entire episode. The noise of the failing engine, the vibration, the suddeness of it certainly would have gotten their attention.”
Cardone told INSIDE EDITION, “I was texting my wife, ‘I’m on 1063. It’s in trouble. I love you and I love the girls,’ because I think this is the last message that she might get from me.”
Grant Cardone, a motivational speaker, is now safely home with his wife Elena in West Hollywood, who teared up just thinking about her husband’s close call.
“When you think about losing your spouse, it’s kind of unnerving. We have two small kids and we happen to love each other,” said Elena.
He’ll never forget the day he had a front row seat as a hero pilot flew his way into the history books.