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Trapped on the Tarmac: Passengers Sing ‘I Believe I Can Fly’ on Delayed Flight

Long hours and Las Vegas heat inspire song, not mutiny

picture-18276-1372868632By: Chris Martins // June 11, 2013

By now, we should all be well aware of the restorative and inspirational powers of an R. Kelly song. The man brought genuine glee to SoCal’s so-cool Coachella this year when he performed with Phoenix, there was a petition to make his “Ignition” remix the new national anthem (over 10,000 signatures), and his Trapped in the Closet musical soap opera has happily franchised itself into a book deal and a hilarious soundboard.

Now, Kells has indirectly provided hope and relief to an airplane full of passengers stuck on a Las Vegas tarmac for several hours in 100-degree heat. As HuffPo reports, those trapped on the delayed Phoenix-bound flight broke out into song, belting out 1996’s enduring and apropos “I Believe I Can Fly.” In the video below, it seems one passenger cued up the song on a Jawbone Jambox, inspiring lots of giggles and off-key warbling.

While the sing-along no doubt helped them make it through the AC-free ordeal, the would-be flyers’ faith was not rewarded. After sitting in one snackless and waterless Allegiant Air jet for 90 minutes, they were transferred to a second plane which wound up having mechanical difficulties resulting in two and a half more hours wasted. Four passengers became ill — two vomiting and two passing out. Kells should comp them Bonnaroo passes.