While The New York Times included many of the Seattle plane thief’s upbeat remarks in its highlights, the paper cut his politically charged comment.
Horizon Air employee Richard Russell stole the turboprop passenger plane in Seattle on Friday night, flying it for nearly an hour before crashing it on Puget Sound, reported TheNYT. The outlet released an eight-minute excerpt of the approximately 25-minute conversation Russell had with air traffic controllers, but omitted a joke pertaining to affirmative action.
“Hey, you think if I land this successfully, Alaska [Air Group] would give me a job as a pilot?” Russell asks one controller. Alaska Air Group is Horizon Air’s parent company.
“You know, I think they would give you a job doing anything if you could pull this off,” the controller responds.
“Yeah, right,” says the pilot. (RELATED: Human Remains Found At Site Of Stolen Horizon Air Plane Crash Near Seattle)
NY Times cuts the subsequent audio, during which Russell says “nah, I’m a white guy, they –”
TheNYT did not respond immediately to a request for comment regarding why it had cut this part of the exchange.
The company kept other lighthearted remarks made by Russell.
“Just flying the plane around, do you seem comfortable with that?” a controller asked the pilot.
“Oh, hell yeah, it’s a blast, man,” Russell responds. “I played video games before, so, you know, I know what I’m doing a little bit.”
The pilot crashed after nearly an hour, killing himself but no others.
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