1. BRAVE

    F-16 Pilot Sent to Ram 9/11 Plane

    Mario Tama / Getty Images

    Lt. Heather “Lucky” Penney was ready to sacrifice her life to bring down the hijacked United Airlines Flight 93 on September 11, 2001. Armed jets weren't kept on standby at the time, so Penney and her commanding officer had only their planes to use against the hijacked airliner. Three planes had already hit the towers and the Pentagon when her commander told her to scramble her plane. “I’m going to go for the cockpit,” said her commander. “I’ll take the tail,” replied Penny, a rookie at the time. They didn't have to, because the passengers on the flight brought the plane down themselves. “I genuinely believed that was going to be the last time I took off,” she says. “If we did it right, this would be it.”

    Read it at The Washington Post