Fictional Betty Ong Transcript from Flight 11- An Alternative Ending to 9/11?

9/11

Screenplay
Betty Ong Transcript from Flight 11- An Alternative Ending to 9/11

Introduction:
American Airlines flight attendant Betty Ong, 45, known as “Bee,” of Andover, Mass., was working tourist class on flight 11, a Boeing 767, flying from Boston to Los Angeles on September 11th 2001.
Betty placed a 23 minute call to a Nydia Gonzalez at the American Airlines operations desk emergency line at 8:20 AM. The call ceased at 8:43 AM.
Mohammed Atta and three other accomplices crashed the plane (The first of the four hijacked that day) into the north tower of The World Trade Center at 8:45 AM.

The original transcript below is followed by an alternative ending which is a section of my screenplay “aLTERNATIVE eNDING”
While “aLTERNATIVE eNDING” is not a factual account of the events that happened that day, it is intended to reflect the true heroism of those who lost their lives in the September 11th attacks. It’s a response to the challenge of “What would you say if you could speak to Betty Ong”

Factual Scene: Last radio contacts with Flight 11 cockpit from the tower –
8:11:58 – 46R: AAL11, your traffic is at, uh, 2 o’clock 20 miles southwest-bound MD80 310.
8:12:04 – AAL11: AAL11, roger.
8:24:38 – Unknown: (Unreadable) We have some planes. Just stay quiet, and you’ll be O. K. We are returning to the airport.
8:24:46 – 46R: And, uh, who’s trying to call me here?
8:24:53 – 46R: AAL11, are you trying to call?
8:24:57 – Unknown: Nobody move, everything will be O. K. If you try to make any moves, you’ll endanger yourself and the airplane. Just stay quiet.
8:33:59 – Unknown: Nobody move please; we are going back to the airport. Don’t try to make any stupid moves.

Factual Transcript of Betty Ong on flight 11-
AMERICAN AIRLINES OPERATIONS: What’s the number of your seat?
BETTY ONG: OK. I’m in the jump seat right now. That’s 3R.
OPERATIONS: What is your name?
BETTY ONG: My name is Betty Ong. I’m Number 3 on Flight 11.
OPERATIONS: OK.
BETTY ONG: And the cockpit is not answering their phone. There’s somebody stabbed in business class, and we can’t breathe in business. Um, I think there is some Mace or something. We can’t breathe. I don’t know, but I think we’re getting hijacked.
OPERATIONS: Can you describe the person, that you said someone is shot in business?
BETTY ONG: I’m sitting in the back. Somebody’s coming back from business. If you can hold on for one second here, they’re coming back.
BETTY ONG: Our Number 1 got stabbed. Our purser is stabbed. Nobody knows who stabbed who. We can’t even get up to business class right now because nobody can breathe. Uhhh, our number one is stabbed right now.
BETTY ONG: (garbled) Our Number 5, our first class passenger, our first class galley flight attendant and our purser have been stabbed. And we can’t get into the cockpit. The door won’t open.
OPERATIONS: This is operations. What flight number are we talking about?
OPERATIONS: At this point we are talking about Flight 12.
OPERATIONS: Flight 12. OK.
BETTY ONG: No, we’re on Flight 11 right now. This is Flight 11.
OPERATIONS: This is Flight 11. I’m sorry, Nadine.
BETTY ONG: Boston to Los Angeles.
OPERATIONS: Yes.
BETTY ONG: Our Number 1 has been stabbed, and our 5 has been stabbed.
OPERATIONS: Can anybody get up to the cockpit? Can anyone get up to the cockpit?
BETTY ONG: We can’t even get into the cockpit. We don’t know who’s up there.
(Dial tone, call lost)

Below is the fictional section of the “aLTERNATIVE eNDING” screenplay discussed in the preface
AMERICAN AIRLINES OPERATIONS: What’s the number of your seat?
BETTY ONG: OK. I’m in the jump seat right now. That’s 3R.
OPERATIONS: What is your name?
BETTY ONG: My name is Betty Ong. I’m Number 3 on Flight 11.
OPERATIONS: OK.
BETTY ONG: And the cockpit is not answering their phone. There’s somebody stabbed in business class, and we can’t breathe in business. Um, I think there is some Mace or something. We can’t breathe. I don’t know, but I think we’re getting hijacked.

Call interrupted……
FBI: Betty, this is Max Taylor at the FBI, can you hear me ?
BETTY ONG: Yes, yes I can.
FBI: Betty, I need you to listen to me very carefully. I am going to need you to act on the things that I tell you, but you must keep calm, can you do this ?
BETTY ONG: Yes I can.
FBI: Betty, your plane has been taken over by hijackers of Eastern descent. They intend to crash the plane in a populated area unless you and your fellow passengers can do something about it.
BETTY ONG: Oh my god, wait a second – someone’s coming back from up front – They have been stabbed.
FBI: Yes Betty, I know, please listen to me, focus on my voice.
BETTY ONG: OK.
FBI: Betty, you must get control of the cockpit as quickly and silently as you can.
The pilots, John and Thomas are already dead, so it’s up to you to save the rest of the crew and passengers.
The hijackers are currently flying the plane.
BETTY ONG: Oh God, John and Tom are dead, are you sure ?
FBI: Yes, I am sorry Betty, Some other staff and passengers are already dead or dying, do not try to help them until you have completed your task. OK ?
BETTY ONG: OK.
FBI: When we finish talking, find Madeline Sweeney – she is on the phone near the front of the plane.
Both of you must enlist as many staff and passengers around you with the details I have told you.
Choose burly people to be your attack – make sure they understand that some of them get injured in the process.
They will understand. Are you getting this OK ?
BETTY ONG: Yes, yes I am
FBI: Outside the cockpit there will 3 hijackers with box cutters, a long knife and pepper spray.
Use seat cushions to filter the air and protect your face against the spray.
Get the men in your group to rush at these men and disarm them as quietly as possible, if they have to kill them then it’s OK.
Ideally, restrain them by the throat so they cannot make any noise to alert the men in the cockpit, if they hear the commotion they may crash the plane immediately instead of later. Beware of any Eastern descent men pretending to be passengers, they may be connected with the hijacking.
BETTY ONG: I don’t know if I can do this, this is just too much.
FBI: Betty, I know you can do this, I know you can.
BETTY ONG: How will we get into the cockpit ?
FBI: If you made a lot of noise disarming the three hijackers use the emergency axe located in the left gantry storage cabinet and strike the cockpit door at the lock, just once as hard as you can, it will spring open.
If you were quiet in the process of disarming the Hijackers then go to the door and have one of your men knock the door and say “Mohammed, Mohammed Atta, Allah Akbar” They may open the door.
You will have the element of surprise, but only for a few moments – you must move very fast and get hold of their hands first – wrestle them away from the controls – Then get them out of the pilot seats and tie them up, we need Mohammed Atta, so he will try to kill himself, so make sure some burly people are assigned to the watch them exclusively.
BETTY ONG: Ok, let me write that down. OK, I’ve got it
If we succeed, how are we going to fly the plane ?
FBI: Did you ever see it in the movies Betty ?- It’s gonna be just like that, so let’s cross that bridge then OK ?
BETTY ONG: OK
FBI: Betty, we have been talking for 7 minutes, so you have 16 minutes left. Act quickly but do not panic. Can you manage that Betty?
BETTY ONG: Yes, Yes I will try
FBI: Good luck Betty, try to keep this phone on as long as you can, we may lose each other.
If you make it into the cockpit, put the headset on – I will be there waiting for you.
Remember, the lives of the remaining passengers and people on the ground are at stake, you have an opportunity to save them.
BETTY ONG: Yes, yes, please pray for me. Goodbye,

Screenplay continues.

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Susan Abraham

Ms Abraham has been working in the tech indusrty for over 14 years and specializes in fuzzy logic analysis. Recent pieces have been printed in Wired Magazine, Tech Review and Cat Fancier. Although the latter story did not require any tech knowledge, Mr Tiddles gave it his full approval.