In a new memoir, the person in charge of Massport at the time of the 9/11 attacks said that she was “used as a scapegoat” by the media and public officials, was forced to resign and was plagued by attacks for the next 20 years.
At the North Shore Chamber of Commerce luncheon on Thursday, Virginia Buckingham recalled the horrific experience she heard of two planes hitting the World Trade Center—they took off from Logan Airport in Boston.
She wrote that she thought about the 9/11 images later and thought of United Airlines 175 passengers who saw the event live. After U.S. Flight 11.
She added that in the testimony of the negligent death lawsuit filed against her, the plaintiff’s lawyer asked her if she knew that the FBI believed that a terrorist attack was only a matter of time.
She wrote, “No,” “I don’t know.” I don’t even know.
Brian Sullivan, a retired FAA agent said that Buckingham was at the time the CEO of Massport and earned $150,000. He should have done better.
“Obviously, Massport knows about the potential threats to Massport’s vulnerabilities and Virginia Buckingham should be its CEO,” Sullivan stated. She also said that she knew of the “Logan Shortcomings Memo.”
He stated that the risk assessment had been “transmitted to subordinates.”
Buckingham was quickly called out.
She stated that within 48 hours of the attack, “the first stories appeared, suggesting that I might get fired.”
She stated that she was forced to resign six weeks after the attack and was “heartbroken” by being accused of hijacking.
But in the next 20 years, she “has been fortunate to have contact with some 9/11 families and even establish friendships,” she added, “their hugs helped me move forward.”