Southwest Airlines pilot involved in emergency landing from Olathe, Kansas

Tammie Jo and Dean Shults at Mid America Nazarene University in March 2017. Tammie Jo spoke to a Lunch and Learn gathering about breaking the glass ceiling

A Southwest Airlines pilot who was forced to make an emergency landing on Tuesday relied on her faith to keep calm in the tense situation.

The Washington Post reports that Shults served in the Navy for ten years.

Although one woman, identified as Jennifer Riordan, died during the incident, after one of the aircraft's windows was blown out by a piece of the failed engine, Shults' quick thinking and calm demeanor are being credited with preventing additional fatalities. Seven others among the 144 passengers were injured.

This April 17, 2018 photo provided by Marty Martinez shows the window that was shattered after a jet engine of a Southwest Airlines airplane blew out at altitude, resulting in the death of a woman who was almost sucked from the window during the flight of the Boeing 737 bound from NY to Dallas with 149 people aboard, shown after it made an emergency landing in Philadelphia.

Her name is Tammie Jo Shults.

"I'm glad that we have rectified that throughout our military since, obviously, she showed tremendous skill and poise at one of the most critical moments a pilot could ever face, so I had to tease you a little bit about that before I began my questions".

Mr. Martinez said after passengers were safely off the plane and quarantined in Philadelphia, they were told Capt. Shults had commanded the flight.

She met her husband - Dean Shults, who's now also a Southwest pilot - during that time, who she described as her "knight in shining airplane".

After Flight 1380's emergency landing, Shults walked down the aisle and checked in on passengers, travelers said. The Navy "let me take the test and fill out the application for aviation officer candidate school, but there did not seem to be a demand for women pilots", she said.


"We can confirm that Lt Commander Shults was among the first cohort of women pilots to transition to tactical aircraft", the navy said in a statement on Wednesday. In 1983, she graduated from MidAmerica Nazarene, in Olathe, Kan., with degrees in biology and agribusiness, Carol Best, a university spokeswoman told The Kansas City Star.

"Can you have the medical meet us there on the runway", Capt Shults calmly told air traffic controllers in Philadelphia. "We've got injured passengers", Shults then requests. "They said there's a hole and that someone went out".

"Maintain any altitude above 3000 feet and you let me know when you want to turn base", said the controller. You said there was a hole and somebody went out?

Passenger Alfred Tumlinson of Texas praised Shults and her crew for their professionalism.

"It would be nice if they would take away the ceilings [women] have over our heads", she told the magazine. "I'm going to send her a Christmas card. with a gift certificate for getting me on the ground".

After serving in the Navy, Schuts joined Southwest Airlines as a pilot.

"It was just as if she and I were sitting here talking", Virginia Shults said. "All the passengers wanted to know who we owed our lives to", he said. A combination of a person's natural inclinations and the kind of training she received in the military were the key factors in her safe landing. "Knowing Tammie Jo, I know her heart is broken for the death of that passenger", Virginia said.

Southwest Airlines declined to name the crew of flight 1380 and Shults, who has two children, was not immediately available for comment.

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