On April 7, 1994, 42-year-old flight engineer Oborn Calloway, who worked for the Federal Express transportation company, boarded the plane, intending to kill himself, all the crew members and send the board to the ground, simulating a plane crash. Oborn hoped his family would get massive insurance coverage for his death.
Calloway would never have dared to do such recklessness, but when hiring he lied about his flying experience, and when it was revealed, he was threatened with dismissal from FedEx.
Federal Express Flight 705 departed Tennessee for California with a shipment of electronics for Silicon Valley. Oborn climbed aboard with a guitar case containing several hammers and a spearfishing gun. He was going to turn off the recording of the cockpit conversations, and then kill all the crew with a hammer, simulating the injuries typical of plane crashes (Oborn was a martial artist in the past). He took a spearfishing gun just in case. If Calloway had succeeded, his family would have received $ 2.5 million in insurance from FedEx.
Luckily for the crew, Calloway's plan didn't work. One of the pilots noticed the conversation recorder turned off by Oborn and turned it on again. 20 minutes after takeoff, Oborn burst into the cockpit and began to hammer everything that moves with a hammer. Each crew member received several blows. As eyewitnesses later said, Calloway struck with a face devoid of all emotions. In America, it is customary to say "just a business" in such cases.
After a fierce fight, the wounded pilots managed to knock Oborn to the floor and twist him. At this time, the unguided aircraft flew several times at the limit of its capabilities, threatening to collapse from overloads right in the air.
The pilots made an emergency landing at Memphis airport. Oborn was arrested. All of the crew on FedEx Flight 705 were seriously injured. First pilot James Tucker's skull was fractured in several places, causing him to experience motor problems in his right arm and right leg. Captain David Sanders received multiple head injuries - doctors had to sew on his right ear. Second Flight Engineer Peterson also suffered multiple cranial and temporal artery injuries. The damage to the aircraft was estimated at $ 800, 000.
Calloway said in court that he was in a state of passion and did not control his actions. But the court sentenced him to double life in prison for hijacking an airplane and attempted murder. Oborn is now in Atwater Prison in California. In the US penitentiary system, he is referred to as "prisoner number 14601-076".
In 1994, the Civil Aviation Pilots Association awarded Sanders, Tucker and Peterson the Gold Medal of Heroism, the highest honor an American pilot can receive.