Only four men survived the plane crash. The pilot. A politician. A cop... and the criminal he was shackled to.
On an icy night in October 1984, a commuter plane carrying nine passengers crashed in the remote wilderness of northern Alberta, killing six people. Four survived: the rookie pilot, a prominent politician, a cop, and the criminal he was escorting to face charges. Despite the poor weather, Erik Vogel, the 24-year-old pilot, was under intense pressure to fly. Larry Shaben, the author's father and Canada's first Muslim Cabinet Minister, was commuting home after a busy week at the Alberta Legislature. Constable Scott Deschamps was escorting Paul Archambault, a drifter wanted on an outstanding warrant. Against regulations, Archambault's handcuffs were removed-a decision that would profoundly impact the men's survival.
As the men fight through the night to stay alive, the dividing lines of power, wealth, and status are erased, and each man is forced to confront the precious and limited nature of his existence.
In this electrifying history, Canadian journalist Shaben chronicles a devastating plane crash and its ramifications on the four survivors. On an icy night in October 1984, a small commuter plane crashed in the Canadian wilderness. One of the four survivors was the author s father, Larry Shaben, the country s first Muslim cabinet minister. The others included the young pilot, a police officer, and the drifter he was escorting to face criminal charges. Larry s physical wounds healed within two months. But he was a different person, more subdued and quietly haunted, writes Shaben. Over the ensuing years, her curiosity about the event grew. The crash s impact on my father, and the unlikely friendships that formed between the survivors lodged the event firmly in my psyche, she writes. Shaben skillfully navigates the intricate language of flying for those not familiar with its jargon. She delves into the darker side of the Canadian commuter airline industry and its sorry record of accidents and unreliable equipment. She also adroitly recounts how the survivors cooperated on the night of the crash, in spite of their differences. Though each man incurred emotional scars as a result of the incident, the bonds formed between the survivors during the ordeal lasted for decades. Shaben s riveting narrative is filled with heart and the story is well told.
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Fascinating look at the aftermath of a Canadian plane crash & how it altered the course of the lives of the survivors. Inspiring & heartbreaking at times. Great read for any adventure writing fans.