QANTAS: Forgotten Heroes of Qantas Flight QF72!

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After more than 11 years, we the undersigned are respectfully calling on the Australian Prime Minister, The Hon. Scott Morrison MP, Qantas Group Chairman, Mr. Richard Goyder, Qantas Group Board of Directors, Qantas Group CEO, Mr. Alan Joyce, Airbus Group Chairman, Mr. Rene Obermann, Airbus Group Board of Directors, and Airbus Group CEO, Mr. Guillaume Faury to please acknowledge and recognise, Qantas Captain Kevin 'Sully' Sullivan (Ret.), First Officer Peter Lipsett, and Second Officer Ross Hales, for saving the lives of 315 passengers and crew onboard Qantas Flight 72 on October 7, 2008.

Against all odds, these courageous men skillfully pulled off one of the most remarkable near-death escapes in aviation history when they critically handled and recovered a falling aircraft from the sky not once but twice when all they could see was the Indian Ocean.

Their selfless act, courage, and cool-headed actions under extreme pressure ensured the lives of 315 passengers and crew was safely back in their hands. 119 passengers were injured, twelve seriously, in what was described by many of the passengers as the "Terror Flight from Hell!"

Sullivan a born American (who calls Australia his home) is a former U.S. Navy Top Gun fighter pilot. Sullivan had no option but to execute a military manoeuvre to safely land the Qantas Airbus A330 aircraft. A move that was familiar territory for Sullivan having practiced it many times in the Navy for similar situations. In doing so, he and his crew cautiously avoided the possibility of another sudden nosedive which would have been catastrophic and fatal.

Sullivan now medically retired faces an uphill battle in dealing with the struggles of managing his chronic PTSD constantly every day as a direct result of Qantas Flight 72. This extraordinary human being has certainly gone above and beyond the call of duty and has certainly ticked all the boxes. A very modest and well-respected citizen, Sullivan downplays his heroics acknowledging that it was a team effort just doing their jobs.

Below are some of the many written testimonies from passengers acknowledging Sullivan and his men for their heroism. Names have been withheld with respect to their privacy at this time.

  • Your courage, expertise, and experience saved my young family’s life. You are all heroes! The crew absolutely exercised tremendous intelligence, skill, and professional composure to bring us home to our extended loved ones on that day.
  • You should be all extremely proud of yourselves dealing with such arduous circumstances. Please uphold the faith in your judgment and ability, as you all saved many people that day.
  • I spoke to the Pilot immediately following our emergency landing and although he was physically shaken and drained his first reaction was for the passengers and he traveled through the plane talking to the passengers and calming them. Again our deepest thanks and appreciation to your wonderful crew who were totally professional and deserve public recognition from the company for their actions.
  • I am writing to thank you for saving the lives of my treasured daughters. If it weren’t for the swift skilled actions of the Captain and the care of the crew, their lives could have been cut short.

Award Recommendations:

  • The Qantas Chairman's Diamond Award - Awarded for valour and/or selflessness so extraordinary, that the reputation of the airline has been enhanced in the eyes of other Qantas staff and the Australian public.
  • The Cross Of Valour (CV) - is awarded only for acts of conspicuous Courage in circumstances of extreme peril. It is the highest Australian Bravery Decoration and the highest civilian Bravery award in Australia.


Please help us by signing this petition, share it online, and making it go viral, until the Australian Federal Government, Qantas Group, and the Airbus Group do the right thing and honour these Men Of Valor for their remarkable and outstanding contribution to worldwide aviation.

Minds need to CHANGE.

Thank you and God Bless.


Team Sullivan

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