In A Plane Crash? Selfie Time!

Ferdinand Puentes captures this photo of himself as his plane sinks behind him
Ferdinand Puentes captures this photo of himself as his plane sinks behind him

So who wants evidence that the seemingly vapid pastimes of modern people are actually worthwhile and contribute to history’s record of humanity’s wondrous experiences? Because we’ve got it.

On December 11, 2013 a 2002 Grand Cessna Caravan air-plane crashed into the ocean off the Coast of Hawaii. The passengers stayed calm as they filed out of the fuselage filling with saltwater. Clinging to their buoyant seats as the plane sank, all but one passenger survived.

Another passenger, Hawaiian born Ferdinand Puentes, strapped on his GoPro and started filming. One shot of his spontaneous coverage of the event is the selfie that should win the internet. It’s the picture above: a ball-capped Ferdinand floating stranded in the Pacific, and his plane slowly descending, nose first, to the ocean floor behind him.

The eight passengers were eventually rescued by the Coast Guard, and Ferdinand is fortunately still around to tell the tale.

Here’s some footage he took of the crash:

Zach Buck

Zach Buck is a writer and editor currently living in South Korea. He serves as the official editor of Spatial Studies magazine HEADREST. In 2016 he released experimental digital archive game house.xct_ with Other Families, and it can be read about on

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