When I fell from the sky: surviving a plane crash

When I fell from the sky : the true story of one woman’s miraculous survival by Juliane Koepcke.

A library customer told me about this book, and I just had to read it. Perhaps we all have some level of fear of flying, and it felt to me as though this book showed that there is always hope no matter how bad things seem.

Juliane was in her late teens when she boarded a LANSA flight in Lima on 24 December 1971 to fly with her mother to Pucallpa to have Christmas with her father. They had been served a small breakfast when after thirty minutes into the flight they ran into a thunderstorm which shook the plane and crashed items around on the passengers inside. There was a flash of lightening or explosion and the plane dives steeply down. Juliane was in a window seat at the back and can see all the way to the cockpit. She heard her mother calmly say “Now it’s all over”

Juliane and the plane fell two miles out of the sky, and she experienced the fall as if it lasted no longer than the blink of an eye. Peoples screams faded and the roar of the engines stopped. When Juliane came to she was still strapped into her seat, but she was alone.

This tale of survival follows Juliane’s eleven day walk out of the Amazon jungle – the only survivor of the 92 on the plane. She had a broken collar bone, a gash on her leg, and a black eye with concussion which left her blacking out until mid-morning the next day. Having grown up in Lima and the rainforest gave Juliane some bush skills. Her survival is truly a modern-day miracle.