As one of the most notorious cases of paranormal activity, the stories about the ghosts of flight 401 have more credibility than most and are often used as proof for the existence of ghosts. While a haunted airplane doesn’t fit the typical description of a spooky place, nearly two dozen people have reportedly witnessed the friendly and protective ghosts of Eastern Airlines, with many of the sightings being from very credible sources.
In 1972, Eastern Airlines Flight 401 was making a routine flight from New York City to Miami. As they were flying over the Florida Everglades, the pilot and co-pilot faced problems when lowering the landing gear. While communicating with the control tower to try and solve this problem, they didn’t notice that the plane was steadily descending. By the time the pilots realized, it was too late and the plane crashed, killing 101 people including the pilot, Bob Loft, and the fight engineer, Don Repo. The two are said to still be watching over the airline’s passengers and crew in spirit.
Eastern Airlines reportedly recycled the salvageable parts from flight 401 by using them on other planes and most of the sightings of Don Repo and Bob Loft have occurred on the planes with these recycled parts. The two ghosts have never been seen on the same flight or by the same people, but several credible reports have been made. People who knew the pilot and engineer have seen and identified their ghosts and people who did not know them have been able to identify them in pictures.
It’s said that these Eastern Airlines ghosts appear very lifelike—to the point that people have believed they were speaking with a real person until the apparition suddenly disappeared in front of their eyes. One of the first sightings was reported by a pilot and two flight attendants. They claimed to have spoken with Loft’s ghost before the flight, believing that he was another pilot, before he suddenly disappeared. The pilot was so shaken by this experience that he decided to cancel the flight.
Another passenger approached a stewardess to ask about the silent, still man dressed as a pilot sitting in her row. As the flight attendant glanced over at the man, he vanished in front of both women, leaving the passenger frightened.
Many people believe that Loft and Repo watch over the passengers and crew to prevent another fatal crash, and several witnesses have claimed that Loft or Repo spoke to them. In one instance, Repo reportedly appeared in front of an Eastern Airlines captain and told him “there will never be another crash. We will not let it happen.”
Repo has also been frequently seen doing routine flight checks and fixing objects aboard the aircraft before the flight. One flight engineer reported that while he was doing the pre-flight check, a very lifelike Repo walked up to him and said “you don’t need to worry about the pre-flight. I’ve already done it.”
One of the most ominous sightings was when Faye Mayweather, an Eastern Airlines flight attendant, noticed the face of a man looking toward her from one of the plane’s ovens. She quickly ran to fetch two of her coworkers, one of which had been friends with Don Repo and identified him immediately. He warned them, “watch out for the fire on this plane”. Strangely, the airplane faced serious engine problems during the flight and was not able to fly the second leg of the course due to safety concerns.
Even one of the company’s Vice Presidents claims to have seen Bob Loft. He was seated in first-class and talking with a man who he believed to be the pilot of the aircraft. After several minutes, he recognized this person as pilot Bob Loft and the apparition immediately vanished. Needless to say, this left the Vice President shocked.
In total, these Eastern Airlines ghosts have been sighted over 20 times by various pilots, flight engineers, flight attendants, and passengers. The sheer number and credibility of the sightings make this a more believable story than most. Could Bob Loft and Don Repo really still be taking care of passengers? Why haven’t their souls been able to move on? Regardless, it’s definitely not a bad thing to have two skilled and passionate spirits watching over your flight to ensure your safe arrival.