Mike Rowe pointed to the bravery of one of the passengers on Flight 93 on Sept. 11, 2001 when asked his thoughts about Nike’s latest ad campaign featuring Colin Kaepernick.
In the ad, the former San Francisco 49ers quarterback is featured with the words, “Believe in something, even if it means sacrificing everything.”
“Nike’s free to celebrate whomever they wish, and Kaepernick is entitled to his opinion–kneeling, standing, or lying down,” the 56-year-old television host explained on his Facebook Monday. “But if I was going to put someone’s face on a billboard – someone who epitomized bravery and sacrifice – I might have gone another way, especially this time of year. I might have gone with this guy – Tom Burnett.”
Rowe continued, “Tom’s last act on earth was one of the most courageous things imaginable. And his last words to his wife, Deena, are among the most inspiring I’ve ever heard. Those exact words are at the top of this page, and the bottom. They were spoken 17 years ago, under conditions I hope to never experience. I’ll never forget Tom’s last words. I hope you won’t either.”
The host of “Dirty Jobs then shared the details of the phone messages between Burnett–who was on board the plane from Newark to San Francisco that was hijacked by terrorists–and his wife. Burnett along with the other passengers on the plane worked together to try to take down their hijackers, ultimately crashing the plane in a field in Pennsylvania that was headed for Washington, D.C.
The whole conversation can be viewed here. But the last part is probably the most incredible.
Tom: We’re waiting until we’re over a rural area. We’re going to take back the airplane.
Deena: No! Sit down, be still, be quiet, and don’t draw attention to yourself! (The exact words taught to me by Delta Airlines Flight Attendant Training).
Tom: Deena! If they’re going to crash this plane into the ground, we’re going to have do something!
Deena: What about the authorities?
Tom: We can’t wait for the authorities. I don’t know what they could do anyway.
It’s up to us. I think we can do it.
Deena: What do you want me to do?
Tom: Pray, Deena, just pray.
(after a long pause)
Deena: I love you.
Tom: Don’t worry, we’re going to do something…