42. D.B. Cooper: The Infamous Skyjacker

Aircraft hijacking, or skyjacking is the intentional taking an airplane usually done for political purposes. Unlike vehicle hijacking, which is done for financial gain the most part, skyjacking is a darker, more , potentially life-threatening action. During the mid-1960s to the , about 160 aircraft were skyjacked worldwide. In the States, many had taken control of aircraft, but one had ever escaped the reach of law with one glaring exception, D.B. Cooper.

D.B. Cooper's name is Dan Cooper, but his legend began D.B. Cooper because of a mistake by the in 1971. On November 24, Cooper hijacked a 727 jetliner after purchasing a one-way ticket from to Seattle, Washington. Cooper demanded $200,000, and four to be delivered upon arrival to Seattle. Authorities with his ransom request, and Cooper let all passengers, and most of the crew off the at that time.

Once back in the air, directed the pilot to fly to Mexico, but jet's fuel was not enough to make there stopping to refuel. It was decided to land Reno, Nevada for refueling. When the aircraft reached , Cooper was not on board. It is thought Cooper jumped out of the aircraft somewhere in wooded forests of Oregon. He had ordered the to fly at the lowest possible speed, and fly at only a 10,000 foot elevation. The of D.B. Cooper was born.

To this date, Cooper skyjacking is the only case that is in the United States. Cooper was never found, was any evidence of the $200,000, and his . Many believe Cooper could not survive a drop such a great altitude, while others say the of any of the money, or any evidence his death proves he survived. In any event, .B. Cooper is a true American legend.