Lubavitcher Woman Saves Entire Airplane


traThe following is via CHI:

A young Lubavitcher woman most likely saved the lives of a plane full of people when she suspected a malfunction with the aircraft just moments before takeoff. Despite being mocked and ridiculed, her insistence lead to the plane being grounded after a serious malfunction was discovered.

The young woman, a member of the Crown Heights community, was scheduled to return from a trip to Israel, where she spent the holiday of Passover.

Her father, Rabbi Kalman Winefeld, related the story to

“My daughter was scheduled to return to New York on Motzai Shabbos from Israel with a stopover in Moscow on Russian airline TransAero. She boarded her flight at Ben Gurion Airport and was seated at the window.

Moments before takeoff, she realized that something was not right with the wing and heard noises that she believed were not regular noises. She first brought this to the attention of the passengers seated beside her, who in turn laughed it off and said it was just noise from the engines.”

Not deterred, she persisted, unbuckling her seatbelt and standing up. The flight attendants, who themselves were already seated and buckled in, instructed her to return to her seat. When she told them her concerns about the plane they too laughed at her. She insisted that she will not fly on the plane if they didn’t check it out.”

After shouting and threatening her, airline officials finally relented and went to investigate her concern.

After returning to the gate, a ground crew began checking over the airplane. At first they said it would be 45 minutes, but nearly two hours later they removed all the passengers from the aircraft, telling them that it did indeed require repairs.

An additional three hours later, the passengers were notified that a replacement plane would be necessary, since the problem was far more severe than originally discovered. Passengers were sent home and told to return the following day.

The issue was so severe that the plane, a Boeing 767, had to be grounded due to the fact that it could have had a mid-air emergency that would have threatened the lives of all those on board, airline officials explained.

The relieved passengers – many of whom had originally expressed irritation at the woman who caused the prolonged delay – came over to her and profusely thanked her for saving their lives.

(Source: CHI)


  1. B”H for the tznius sensitivities displayed by the individual and CHI for giving her father’s name and not publicizing hers.

  2. Not sure reason for using adjective of “Lubavitcher” women.
    Do you now use that adjective for Satmar or Litvash or modern orthodox or even non-religious.
    How is this affiliation relevant to the story.

  3. YWN did not choose the word “Lubavitcher” to describe the woman. The source of this story, mentioned twice, is CHI – Crown CHI gave the woman the description “Lubavitcher”.

  4. To 4, 5, 6 and 7:

    Why is it your concern? Are you uncomfortable with your own Yiddishkeit that you have to resort to posting negative comments about a positive article of a Kiddush Hashem? Would you have made the some comment if it stated a Litvishe or Sephardic woman saved entire plane? I doubt it.

  5. The reason it says lubavitcher is simply because as they said, it was copied from a lubavitch website where it was written they way.
    Why does there always have to be negative comments to a beautiful story of a kiddush Hashem?

  6. »»Im not Lubavitsh..but I really respect lubavitsh people and the way they are moser nefesh for others and all always thinking of others…it takes someone like a lubavitsher that’s always on the lookout for helping others.. to get a zechus of saving a plane full of people..
    I guess that is why they wrote it.

  7. Lubavitch is synonymous with “Chochmo Binah Da’ath” 3 attributes this young lady used incredibly astutely, hence very appropriate to emphasize her close connection to this great organization.

  8. ‘Lubavitcher’ does not signify something negative. Rather it’s written to show how special they are that she stood up and saved lives. It’s written as a praise for them.

  9. Several posters expressed surprise that the article mentioned that the woman was Lubavitch and wondered why they mentioned it.
    Perhaps the answer I found on a different site’s version of the story.
    In that article they mentioned that the Lubavitcher Rebbe had also been known to have “miraculous insights” and described the account where the Rebbe had encouraged Major General Ariel Sharon to take a different return flight to Israel. In the end, the original flight was hijacked by the PLFP, attempting to capture Sharon, who had listened to the Rebbe’s advice and rescheduled his flight.
    Perhaps there are gifts of foresight within the Lubavitcher chassidim…I don’t know.
    BTW, I’m not Lubavitch or even hassidic but I do find that description of the woman as a useful part of the story.
    B”H, that she learned to assert herself when she felt she was right.
    B”H for her gift.

  10. Nothing about pushing “their own”, or about thinking every Chiddid is a Rebbe. If it had been a Yeshiva World commenter or reader that would have been broadcast on this site. If it would have been someone from your school, believe me, your school would let you know. They are proud of her and they should be.

    It really is amazing that she stood up to all that pressure. This story should be made much more famous to encourage people to speak up and to be taken seriously.

    Many air accidents could been avoided had people been taken seriously or had they not been afraid to speak up.

    Oddly, even when you know that you are playing with your life, people still bend to pressure. This girl didn’t.

    I’d love to know what she saw or heard, and what was wrong. Any mute details?

  11. I find it very interesting that all the comments posted are about the fact that the woman is Lubavitch.
    Do u not realize that this could have been a horror story with many jewish people being affected. When Hitler killed so many jewish people he did not ask what sect or level of religiosity.
    It it’s time for us all to wake up and smell the coffee, we need to all unite as one, the jewish people. And not be concerned that one is Lubavitch or one is Satmar but that one is a Jew!

  12. To number 22, relax. We all realize she did something quite remarkable, commendable, etc. But as a news story, why is it important to point out which chevra she belongs to. Like you write, aren’t we all the same? To 20, nice try but I don’t think that many other institutions would let their whole institution know. Lubavitch is quite exceptional when it comes to that.And, as for your second point, I think if the airlines or any other professionals would listen to all the un-professionals, the rest would suffer immensely. Many people have an idea of how things should be, and (a lot) more often than not, they are very very wrong.