When a Russian jet crashed into a river, a captain of a 1898-built steam tugboat tied a rope around the cockpit window and towed the jet to shore with all passengers still inside.
In 1977, Aerosmith’s flight crew inspected a Convair CV-240 for possible use and rejected it because they felt the plane and crew were not up to their standards. That plane crashed on October 20, 1977 from fuel exhaustion due to poor maintenance, killing three members of Lynyrd Skynyrd.
Hungarian pilots forgot to put the gear of their TU154 plane, touched down on the belly, went around for a second approach and landed. No injuries were reported.
A Russian cargo plane was captured by the Taliban in Afghanistan with six crew members aboard. After being held captive in Kandahar for over a year, the crewmen were able to overpower their captors, retake their plane and fly it out of Afghanistan to safety.
In 1986 a Soviet pilot made a bet with his co-pilot that he could land the airplane blind. He curtained all cockpit windows and crashed the plane into the landing strip killing 70 out of 87 passengers.
A pilot was actually recorded saying “I picked a bad day to stop sniffin’ glue” shortly before his plane crashed.
Two paragliders were sucked into a thunderstorm during practice. The updraft was so powerful that one pilot was sucked up to 19,000 feet and killed by a lightning strike. The pilot of the second glider passed out from the altitude, but woke up still airborne and covered in ice.
On July 27, 2007, 2 News Helicopters collided while live on the air and covering a police chase. Despite the best efforts of the stations, one of the audio feeds from a helicopter continued to broadcast the screams of a crew as they plummeted to their deaths.
While in a spin, a pilot ejected from his plane only to watch his unmanned F-106 recover from the spin and land safely in a field. It landed that way because of the weight reduction after ejection.
There has only ever been one successful shoot-down of a F-117A stealth plane, in 1999 during the NATO bombing of former Yugoslavia, the Pilot ejected safely. Since then the US pilot and Serb that shot him down have become good friends.