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Background Attack Aftermath Evidence Misinformation Analysis Memorial

Eyewitness Reports

Many Eyewitnesses Saw Flight 93

This page describes accounts of eyewitnesses on the ground who saw and heard the last minutes of Flight 93. Eyewitness accounts relating to Flight 77 are treated under the Pentagon Attack Eyewitnesses page. Accounts given by callers claiming to be onboard the doomed flights are considered on the Phone Calls page.

The accounts excerpted here corroborate analysis based on other bodies of evidence that Flight 93 was shot down, not crashed as the result of a struggle, as the official story holds.

Vertical Plunge

Virtually all eyewitnesses to Flight 93's crash reported that the plane plunged straight down after making erratic movements. The two accounts in this section and several in the following section are examples.

"When it decided to drop, it dropped all of a sudden, like a stone," said Tom Fritz, 63. Fritz was sitting on his porch on Lambertsville Road, about a quarter mile from the crash site, when he heard a sound that "wasn't quite right" and looked up in the sky. 1  

A few miles north of Lambertsville, yard man Terry Butler, 40, was toiling away at Stoystown Auto Wreckers.


"It dropped out of the clouds," too low for a commercial flight, Butler said. The plane rose slightly, trying to gain altitude, then "it just went flip to the right and then straight down." 2  

Sounds Indicating a Missile Strike

Several witnesses reported hearing bangs before seeing Flight 93 flying in an erratic manner. Some described the engines making strange sounds following the bangs.

But press the mayor for details, and he will add something surprising. "I know of two people -- I will not mention names -- that heard a missile," Stuhl said. "They both live very close, within a couple of hundred yards. . .This one fellow's served in Vietnam and he says he's heard them, and he heard one that day." The mayor adds that based on what he knows about that morning, military F-16 fighter jets were "very, very close." 3  

Laura Temyer and an unnamed male witness both describe two loud bangs before the crash.

Laura Temyer, who lives several miles north of the crash site in Hooversville, was hanging some clothes outside that morning when she heard an airplane pass overhead. That struck her as unusual since she'd just heard on TV that all flights were grounded.

"I heard like a boom and the engine sounded funny," she told the Daily News. "I heard two more booms -- and then I did not hear anything."

What does Temyer think she heard? "I think the plane was shot down," insists Temyer, who said she has twice told her story to the FBI. What's more, she insists that people she knows in state law enforcement have told her the same thing, that the plane was shot down and that decompression sucked objects from the aircraft, explaining why there was a wide debris field. 4  

A witness said he heard two loud bangs before watching the plane take a downward turn of nearly 90 degrees. A large crater, from which none of the plane could be seen, was left in the ground. 5  

Linda Shepley reported hearing a single loud bang before the crash.

One eyewitness to the Pennsylvania crash, Linda Shepley, told television station KDKA in Pittsburgh that she heard a loud bang and saw the plane bank to the side before crashing. 6  

A witness described the plane making screeching sound as it turned downward.

A witness told WTAE-TV's Paul Van Osdol that she saw the plane overhead. It made a high-pitched, screeching sound. The plane then made a sharp, 90-degree downward turn and crashed. 7  

Phone Call From Passenger

Reports of a call by a passenger on Flight 93 provide further evidence of a missile strike.

"We got the call about 9:58 this morning from a male passenger stating that he was locked in the bathroom of United Flight 93 traveling from Newark to San Francisco, and they were being hijacked," said Glenn Cramer, a 911 supervisor.

"We confirmed that with him several times and we asked him to repeat what he said. He was very distraught. He said he believed the plane was going down. He did hear some sort of an explosion and saw white smoke coming from the plane, but he didn't know where.

"And then we lost contact with him." 8  

Other reports since identified the passenger as Edward Felt.

Other Reports

Various other reports provide evidence that Flight 93 was shot down. A Mirror.co.uk article contains the following report about the contents of Flight 93's cockpit voice recorder:

Also, according to sources, the last seconds of the cockpit voice recorder are the loud sounds of wind, hinting at a possible hole somewhere in the fuselage. What caused the smoke and explosion? Why the wind sounds? 9  

Witnesses at Indian Lake, at least two miles from the crash site, reported small debris raining down on the lake.

"It was mainly mail, bits of in-flight magazine and scraps of seat cloth," Tom [Spinelli] said. "The authorities say it was blown here by the wind." But there was only a 10mph breeze and you were a mile and a half away? Tom raised his eyebrows, rolled his eyes and said: "Yeah, that's what they reckon."

Light debris was also found eight miles away in New Baltimore. A section of engine weighing a ton was located 2,000 yards [...] from the crash site. 10  

Other Compilations

Another compilation of eyewitness accounts is archived at flight93crash.com. 11   Another compilation is found in Paul Thompson's Complete 9/11 Timeline, excerpted here.


1. A blur in the sky, then a firestorm, St. Petersburg Times, 9/12/01 [cached]
2. The crash in Somerset: 'It dropped out of the clouds', Pittsburgh Post Gazette, 9/12/01 [cached]
3. We Know it Crashed, But Not Why, The Philadelphia Daily News, 11/15/01 [cached]
4. We Know it Crashed ..., The Philadelphia Daily News, 11/15/01
5. No Survivors Reported In Pennsylvania Plane Crash, Cleveland News Channel 5, 9/01 [cached]
6. Hijack Ends in Pennsylvania Crash, ABCNews.com, 9/12/01 [cached]
7. No Survivors Reported ..., Cleveland News Channel 5, 9/01
8. Day of Terror: Outside tiny Shanksville, a fourth deadly stroke, Pittsburgh Post Gazette, 9/12/01 [cached]
9. What Did Happen to Flight 93?, mirror.co.uk, 9/12/02 [cached]
10. What Did Happen ..., mirror.co.uk, 9/12/02
11. Flight 93 Eyewitness Accounts, www.flight93crash.com,

page last modified: 2006-04-16