'I Promised I Wouldn't Hang Up'

Lisa Jefferson, the phone supervisor who took Todd Beamer's call on Flight 93, believes God called her for a purpose.

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I could just not believe this was actually happening. And I had to look at the screen. We have monitors that let us know if they are in flight or on the ground and what airline and flight information. And everything he was telling me was adding up. I could hear the commotion in the background and after we continued to talk, I’m thinking to myself, this is for real. This is a real hijacking situation. At one point, he thought I had left the phone. I told him I was still here. He was calling out my name and I didn’t want to lose his call. I told him I would be there for him. And I stayed ‘til the end.

One of the most moving things that most people learned about this was when you prayed the Lord’s Prayer with Todd. I know it brought his family a lot of comfort.

Yes, it did. His wife called me a pillar of strength and told me that she was glad that I was the one to take the call and to be on the other end and to be there for her husband.

It’s remarkable that you had the presence of mind to be able to pray with Todd.

A lot of people told me that they wouldn’t have been able to do it, but I guess, God just works in mysterious ways, and I can only say that’s why he used me because I made myself available to him.

When did you realize that you and Todd’s wife had the same first name?

Sharing His Wife's Name
When the plane took a dive. And like I said, when I took the call over, I introduced myself as Mrs. Jefferson, but when the plane took a dive and he thought they were going down, he hollered, Lisa! And I had a look on my face like, how’d he know my first name? I’m sure I answered as Mrs. Jefferson. And then I said, “Yes?” And he said, “Oh, I’m sorry. That’s my wife’s name.” And at that point, I knew we held the same name and I just—it was just so many coincidences that we had. At that point, I knew that his wife’s name was Lisa and when I told him my name was Lisa also, he said, “Oh, my God.” He couldn’t believe it.

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Interview by Wendy Schuman
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