|Updated: 12/04/2011 8:51 am
||Published: 12/03/2011 10:30 pm
LITTLE ROCK, AR - "I was scared to death, first of all, to fly into the Little Rock airport," said Quinton Salmond, survivor of the American Airlines flight 1420 crash.
It's taken twelve years to build up the courage but this weekend, Quintin Salmond is facing his fears.
"Once I hit the runway, everything that happened on june first 1999 came back to me and I jumped."
Salmond is returning to Little Rock for the first time since American Airlines flight 1420 crash-landed at the end of the runway.
"The next thing I heard was a loud screeching noise and then I saw flames and that was it," said Salmond.
Of the 145 people aboard, the pilot and ten passengers died in the crash.
"The next thing I remember is someone yelling in my ear, "We have to cut a hole in your chest and it's going to hurt."
Saturday, he finds closure through a stranger who already feels like family. Another survivor of the crash.
"People can say they know and they understand but unless you were really there and went through everything we did you really don't know," said crash survivor Lisa Rowe who now lives in Cabot.
For the first time - the two passengers feel understood.
"I couldn't bring myself to even come here," Salmond told Rowe.
"Those sights and those sounds will never - they never go away," she responded.
Salmond may not remember everyone's face from flight 1420 but he says that doesn't make them any less his family.
"Never take for granted in the next minute that your heart will be beating because anything can happen to you at anytime, anywhere."