The major story on this date 38 years ago was the brazen hijacking of an airliner on the West Coast by a man calling himself “D.B. Cooper.”
After collecting $200,000 in ransom, the man parachuted from the airliner over a wilderness area south of Seattle. He was never seen again, but some of the ransom money turned up years later along the Columbia River near Vancouver, Washington. Cooper’s exploit led to the term “skyjacking,” and airport security is on a scale unimagined in 1971.
Each year, more than 6.5 million items are confiscated from airline passengers going through security checks.