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Flight 77's path is still a mystery until this day. According to the FAA, once Flight 77 reached the Southeastern tip of Ohio it made a 180 degree turn, and then the air traffic controllers lost contact with it and the transponder was turned off. They also said that it couldn't be seen on radar, which meant that the aircraft traveled over 300 miles to DC, at over 500mph, at an altitude lower than 200 feet. The news agencies all have different speculations, but for some reason they all seem to conclude that it was Flight 77 that smashed into the Pentagon.
Several news reports, along with the paths taken from Flight Explorer, show that 77 went as far as Kansas and was actually over Southern Illinois at approximately 9:43am. The Pentagon was struck by an aircraft which was believed to be Flight 77 at roughly the same time. No one really knows since it was "lost" by the FAA, at least at the point of Ohio.
Lt. Col. Steve O'Brien, the pilot of the C130 that was seen at the Pennsylvania crash, said that he was following a silver American Airlines commercial plane when it hit the Pentagon. But since Flight 77 had been lost by the FAA, then it's hard to say that the aircraft seen by Lt. Col. O'Brien was even the flight in question. That day, another flight -- United Flight 93 which allegedly crashed in Shanksville -- was reported by WCPO-TV in Ohio to have been forced to land at Cleveland Hopkins airport. The FAA had also lost contact with it, and it also disappeared from radar over Ohio - much like Flight 77.
More on the flight paths of American Flight 77:
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