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D.B. Cooper

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As I sit back on the back porch of my estate sipping on a bourbon and soda, just like the one I had on that fateful evening, I see a yellow Boeing 727 flying overhead. Nothing compares to the sheer beauty and craftsmanship of one of those puppies. It's hard to come across a machine like that nowadays, what with the new technology and all. I prefer doing things the old-fashioned way. Computers, pfft, it's not that hard to fly a plane manually. Okay, I'm getting off topic now. The reason I'm writing this is to tell the world where I am now, and how I was so successful. This is mostly by memory, but I highly doubt I'll leave out any of the good parts. 'Kay here goes, straight from the man himself, the infamous Dan Cooper!




As I strutted through the airport, I thought to myself coolly, 'Easy, 'Dan', easy. You've gotten this down to a science. No need to be nervous. Right now, you're just an average business man flying to Seattle for an important business meeting, where you might get the big promotion, with an extensive raise!' I let out a laugh, and that eased the butterflies a little bit. Still, what I was about to pull off was suicidal; and I was pretty unsure.

I walked over to the gate with my briefcase, which contained a home constructed bomb I had learned how to make from the book: How to Make a Bomb! No one stopped me, but there was a very attractive young lady who gave me a wink. 'No Mike, focus.' I thought quietly. But I my mind kept veering off towards her bodacious body.

Nobody questioned what was in the briefcase. Man had security gone to the dogs. Didn't Nixon say that the U.S. was stepping up national security? This was probably the worst guarded airport I had ever seen. I sat down and started to read the book I had purchased: How to Lower the Aft Stairs on a Plane. I had read the piece so many times I could probably write a more detailed description myself; but I found it calmed the nerves a little bit, so I kept reading. Besides, another check through couldn't hurt.

'Gate 1C is now boarding,' a whiny voice stated on the intercom, probably some 18-year-old kid just hitting puberty who couldn't find a better job because he was obsessed with Naruto and spent his time collecting all of the Yu-Gi-Oh! cards. I ran over my plan in my head, envisioning the entire thing (I had only done this a total of 200 times) from start to finish. It seemed like a simple operation, but I'm going to have to see how this all pans out.

I stepped up to the old lady checking the tickets slowly, like a batter would step up to the plate for the winning home run. A little bit shakily, I handed her my ticket and false passport. 'Thanks for flying American Airlines, Dan!' she said a little bit too cheerful for my liking. Whatever, something like that wouldn't matter. I had made it on the plane with the bomb, and that was all I cared about.

My seat was towards the back of the plane (seat 18C to be exact) and close to a flight attendant. That particular detail would come in quite handy later on. In the meantime, I closed my eyes and took a short nap until we got up in the sky.

I was awoken a little too abruptly for my liking because of some turbulence. I felt well rested, but now my adrenaline was pumping as hard as can be. I yawned and pulled a note from my pocket. I handed it to the flight attendant, and she slipped it into her pocket like it was my phone number or something. Bah, like I needed a woman with whom to settle down, I was about to pull off the greatest theft ever! I leaned in and said, 'Ahem, missy, you might want to take another look at that note.' This obviously concerned her because she pulled the note out and unfolded it so slowly my sanity bubble was about to burst. She started reading the note which read:
'I have a bomb in my briefcase. I will use it if necessary. I want you to sit next to me. You are being hijacked. I would like you to give me $200,000 in unmarked $20 dollar bills, along with two sets of parachutes. I would like these demands to be met when we arrive at the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport. The money should be ready, and we should refuel and then proceed to Mexico City. If these demands are not met, I will blow up this plane. Please relay this note to the captain.'
And as she finished, her eyes had widened to a point that I could see the red of the back of her eyes. She glanced at me like 'You monster! How could you do such a thing?' Then she got up to give the note to the captain. She came back with a concerned look on her face as she sat down next to me. I cracked upon the magazine in the back of the seat, and read it like it really mattered to me. After I had scoured the magazine and read through How to Lower the Aft Stairs; I started to make small talk with the flight attendant, whose name was Tina Muckrow. She seemed like a really nice person; maybe I should have given her my number after all. After about 30 minutes of this apparently painful experience, the captain said we would be landing, and the plane started to drop.

I ordered the captain to taxi the plane to an abandoned section of the runways and dim the lights. I ordered all of the passengers to be released; but I had the flight attendant, captain, flight engineer, and first officer all stay on the plane. I made sure they all got something to eat; and for myself, I ordered a bourbon and soda. Shortly after this, the money and parachutes came. 'Ahhh, sweet paper!' I exclaimed. I then checked all of the parachutes to see if they were functional. They appeared to be fine. Air control was lecturing me about how air piracy is illegal and yadda yadda. I replied, 'Look, do you really think that I'm going to back down after getting this far into the process?'

The plane had been stopped for over fifteen minutes and still not fully refueled. I smelled something fishy in the air. 'You know,' I said. 'All it takes is for me to push the detonate button.' I took a long sip on my drink before continuing. 'Now, can you please tell them to hurry up refueling?' The captain radioed in, 'Hurry up there, before this thing goes up in flames.' I waited for a little bit longer then I stood up and opened the briefcase. 'All right you have 45 seconds before I blow this plane up! 45 ' 44 ' 43 ' 42 ' 41 ' 40 ' 39' I was prevented from counting down any further because the tank was full. 'Preparing for takeoff,' the captain said nervously. I took another sip on my drink, shook it around and took another one.
As the plane started to get into the air, I said, '10,000 feet, no higher.' The captain knew what I meant. A few minutes later came the captain's drone-like voice stating blandly, 'We're at 10,000 feet.'
I replied, 'Thank you, captain. Oh, and could you depressurize the cabin; that would be great.' 'Tina, go sit with the captain,' I said. 'O-o-ok-kay,' came her nervous response. As she walked away, I started to take my tie off. It would be rather useless during the parachuting. As soon as Miss Muckrow had vanished, I dashed to the aft door. I followed the steps in my book, and it opened up just as easily as unwrapping a Christmas present.
I strapped on two of the parachutes; and with my briefcase tucked in the parachute, I plunged out the rear of the plane. I waited about 30 or so seconds before pulling the cord. It took about two or three minutes before I finally made contact with the ground in the middle of an open field. Thank god I had gotten so lucky, probably shouldn't have made that drop but oh well. I yanked the parachutes off and pulled a compass from my breast pocket. 'Okay, north is that way; so let's go that way and hope I don't come across a road or anyone's property,' I said. 'Damnit what about the parachutes!?' I exclaimed, after just realizing something had to be done with them. I found a stream and I set off the bomb in it along with the parachutes. The raw blast disintegrated the parachutes; and now all I had to carry was a rather large and heavy sack filled with money. I probably should've put the money in the briefcase so I looked less suspicious. Oh well, it won't end the world.
I came to a road after 45 minutes of walking; and I realized that most people wouldn't know I had just hijacked an airplane and held it for ransom, so I walked along until I came across a road sign. If my math was correct, if I was flying at an altitude of 10,000 feet at 650 mph, and if the wind carried me about 2-3 miles off course, I shouldn't have been that far from my recently dead grandmother's home on Preachy Road. Sure enough, the sign read in faded letters: PREACHY RD. I let out a huge sigh of relief at that, and at that no one had seen me yet. I turned and started down Preachy Road; and after about 20 minutes of hauling that God-forsaken sack, I reached the old house Grandma Jenelle used to live in. I brought the sack in with me, and I immediately wrote down two extremely important phone numbers I had found in the magazine. I was so tired from this ordeal that I just went to sleep.
I woke up the next morning and called the first phone number. It was an Asian plastic surgeon. I scheduled an appointment with him for the next day. I had him come to my house for the surgery.
At 7:00, I heard a knock on my door. It was Dr. Ming here to do my surgery. Right when he saw me, he said, 'Oh my, you look familiar, but I just don't know why.'
'Oh, you're probably just imaging things, and besides; my friends say I look like a lot of people.'
'Okay, shall we proceed?'
'Yes, can we make it so that my eyes are less wide and closer together? And can you also make my jaw narrower? '
'Yes, yes, that would be no problem at all.'
The anesthesia kicked in and then I woke up to the cheery Asian talking.
'Oh yay, you finally awake. Don't go outside for four weeks, or else the U.V. rays will make the surgery worthless. Right now your bones are extremely weak and the sunlight could disintegrate them. After four weeks is up, will you call me and tell me if you like?'
'Okay, thanks for the advice and I'll mark it down on my calendar to call you,' I said as I walked over to mark this event on Jenelle's overcrowded calendar. 'Oh, now let me get my wallet to pay you. It's just upstairs; can you wait here for a little bit?'
'Yes I can, I will wait right here.'
I ran upstairs, grabbed a rather large stack of cash that I wouldn't be missing, and tossed it to the short Asian man when I came back down. 'Keep the change,' I said. He replied with an smile too big to fit anyone's face, 'Thank you very much; you are too kind!' and then left. Thank God that was over with. It turns out I ended up paying the guy $13,000, when all I owed him was $4,000. No big deal though, I still had $187,000 with which to work.
I then dialed the second number and ordered a package. The thing wouldn't be here for 7-10 days which wouldn't be a problem because I had four weeks to sit around and do nothing. Fortunately, Jenelle had a lot of food in the fridge, so I could stay here for a while. I seemed to be the talk of the country, as Channel 7 News suggested. They kept talking about a man named D.B. Cooper hijacking a plane. D.B.? I thought it was Dan? Whatever. It doesn't matter anyhow because I had pulled off the greatest heist in history.
In about a week's time my package containing a chemical that drains the color from your skin came. I refrained from using it for a month or so because I wanted the plastic surgery to completely heal before I messed with anything. No sense pulling off one of the greatest feats of man if you're just going to waste it by dying from such a silly cause.
When my four weeks were up, food was getting low; so I headed down to the local supermarket to buy some necessities. I didn't have to worry, because with my altered appearance nobody could tell it was Dan Cooper under all this fraud. After I had bought my groceries I walked to the bank and deposited my remaining money in three $50,000 increments. I kept $37,000 on hand 'cause, you know, anything can happen.
I decided to go back to my normal life and I flew back to my house in New Jersey. The entire time I thought about my previous experience on a plane. I was pretty cool about the whole thing, and I took note of the WANTED signs for Dan Cooper all around the airports. 'He'll never be found,' I chuckled.
Everything went pretty normal after that. I sold my house, bought an estate. Everything became a breeze. I retired and in two years I thought I had robbed and embarrassed the government a little too bad so I decided to give them a lead, I left some of the money on the Columbus River. Hopefully, it would never found.


Right now I still reside in New Jersey and have not been caught. I became a little nervous when that boy found my money; but nothing came from it, so I settled back down. I'm rather proud of my being able to outwit the government, and this is basically my bragging rights, but even this will probably never be found. If you're reading this consider yourself to be the greatest thief in history, because this document has not left my pocket since writing; and no one even knows about it with the exception of me.







Mike Cantado

a.k.a. Dan Cooper
1992





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