Yesterday, Los Angeles-bound Delta flight 1063 was forced to make an emergency landing at New York’s JFK airport moments after a bird strike that nearly crippled the Boeing 757’s engines. Grant Cardone, best-selling author and international sales expert, happened to catch the freakish collision on video (below) as he recorded the takeoff from his seat in the first row.
Breitbart News spoke with Cardone moments after he landed in Los Angeles on a subsequent flight:
“We were on flight Delta 1063 out of JFK–it left 2 minutes late,” Cordone recalled. “I had just finished signing a book over to a celebrity journalist on the plane. I’ve been on thousands of flights, but I had a premonition of taking a video and showing it to my daughters when I got home.
“The birds crossed my iPad screen and next thing it sounds like a Volkswagen Beetle running through the engines of the 757. The plane felt like it moved 50 feet in both directions. I dropped my iPad, grabbed my phone to text my wife: ‘I love you and I love the girls.’ I thought it was my last message.
“Then the engine digested the birds and I thought, ‘Oh my God, the engine is going to light up,’ but it didn’t. The landing was very, very rough. People on the plane were introverted. Nobody made noise. Nobody was screaming. Everybody was just thinking about what was important to them.
“They took one trip around JFK in the air to inspect the engine before they brought the flight down among the emergency vehicles.
“It was terrifying. I’ve been on a lot of flights. This was the scariest flight i’ve ever been on. I thought the plane was going to roll over. We were about 1200 feet above JFK. At that heigh, everybody dies.”
In January 2009, a similar bird strike caused a US Airways flight to make an unprecedented emergency landing in the Hudson River. Captain Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger became a national hero for landing the aircraft safely.
Cardone was recently in the news for his open letter to California governor Jerry Brown (D), in which he declared that he would leave the state if Brown raised income taxes.
For now, Cardone declined to talk politics. He was eagerly waiting for his wife to drive him home.