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Cornfield Pilot Gets Top Medal
News Bytes 08/19/2019 16 Comments

Russian President Vladimir Putin has awarded the nation’s highest medal, the Hero of Russia, to a Ural Airlines pilot. Damir Yusupov landed his passenger plane in a cornfield after a flock of birds knocked out both engines. But the pilot insists the title “hero” doesn’t suit him.

Birds frequently get sucked into jet engines, even though airports use various methods to chase them away from runways. Plane engines simply aren’t designed to withstand strikes from multiple birds or larger birds.

Moments after Yusupov took off from Moscow’s Zhukovsky Airport, one of his engines shut down after it inhaled a bird. He had hoped to circle the airport and land normally. But when his second engine cut off moments later, he knew a quick landing was his only choice.

Yusupov landed Ural Airlines A321 gently in a field of head-high corn. Only one of the 233 people on board was hurt badly enough to be hospitalized.

Some officials suggest the flock of gulls that hit Yusupov’s plane may have been attracted by an illegal garbage dump near the airport. Local authorities confirm there are several dumpsites in the area, including an unapproved one.

People all across Russia have named Yusupov a hero. He calls the praise embarrassing. “It feels odd and I’m shy,” he says.

Putin gave awards to Yusupov and the plane’s second pilot, Georgy Murzin. He also bestowed awards on the cabin crew.

“I didn’t feel any fear,” Yusupov says. “I saw a cornfield ahead and hoped to make a reasonably soft landing.”

Yusupov hailed his cabin crew, who evacuated the passengers. He also apologized to passengers for failing to get them to their destination—Simferopol in Crimea. He says, “I wish a quick recovery to all those injured, and I wish them not to be afraid of flying.”

What does being a hero mean to you? Does your definition fit Damir Yusupov?

He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will abide in the shadow of the Almighty. — Psalm 91:1

(Damir Yusupov speaks to the media in Yekaterinburg, Russia. AP Photo)

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Most recent comments


That's amazing that only one person out 233 people was hurt badly enough to be hospitalized! Praise God that no one died!

I really like how Yusupov isn

I really like how Yusupov isn't being arrogant or wanting a bunch of glory or anything. I think it's funny that he even finds all of the praise that he's getting embarrassing. I do hope he is proud of himself, though. He handled the situation well, and thankfully there were no casualties and only one person went to the hospital.

Wow. He was awesome. He did

Wow. He was awesome. He did what he did best with the plane and saved many people's lives. Let's hope that the birds stop getting into the engines, so then the people and birds both don't die. It is great that he is not prideful and doesn't think highly of himself. I am glad that they acknowledged what he did was really good and gave him an award. And that they gave all the crew an award to and didn't leave them out, because they also helped out. I am glad nowone died and that only one person had to go to the hospital. That shows true skill if you can land a plane that's engines are dead. We need more people like Yusupov in the God's great and glorious world to make it a better place. If everyone was nice and didn't pride themselves but other people acknowledge what they did and praised them for it, that would be so great. God Is Good!!!

Janna (Daniel's sister)

I'm glad most everyone was safe! I actually heard a story of a pilot who had to land in the Hudson River!



@Lena P



God must have given him the wisdom of where he should land, saving many people.


that's almost a merical that only one person was injured I hope they can get hose birds to stop flying around the engines.

I agree with!Vaughn.


I like how he did not say how great he was. I hope he knows that The Lord gave him favor in this.

@Lena P.

I agree with you.

i was there mate

i was there mate


Were you there when they were making it or after? Or are you joking?


Whoops. Didn't me to say that. What I meant was, were you their when the picture was taken?or are you joking?

mo g

Have you ever heard of Sully its this great movie about this pilot who had to land in the Hudson River because of bird stike. There were 155 people on the plane, 155!!! and all of them lived only one person got hurt ( a flight attendent and she had only scrached her leg). The entire crew and passengers were saved whithin 24 minutes

mo g

Mani love that movie


Cool. Sounds like a good movie. Why do you put 'm og' as your title for your comments?

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