ABC News | 2/25/2009 12:00:00 AM
Book Excerpt: 'Out of Captivity: Surviving 1,967 Days in the Colombian Jungle'
Feb 25 -- Read a Selection From This New Book About Survival and Determination, written by Marc Gonsalves, Tom Howes and Keith Stansell, former FARC hostages.
"That, sir, is an engine failure."
From Tommy Janis's tone, you wouldn't have known that anything serious was wrong. He was our pilot on the mission, and he had flown all kinds of aircraft all around the world. Tommy J. was a real larger-than-life guy with more stories to tell than I have hairs on my head -- and I've as full and thick a mane as anybody. His response wasn't borderline sarcastic; it came from a place about as deep into irony country as we were into Colombia.
The "that" he was referring to wasn't so much a thing as it was an absence of a thing -- the steady throbbing pulse of the single 675- horsepower Pratt and Whitney turboprop engine that until a few seconds before had been powering our Cessna Grand Caravan. It didn't take someone like me, a guy who'd been in avionics and aircraft maintenance for all his adult life, to recognize that the relative silence in the cabin was not a good thing.
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