Alternate History

Death of a President - 2003

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On the 21st November 2003 US President George W. Bush arrived in the UK for a state visit. On the 22nd he traveled in Marine One to visit the constituency of Prime Minister Tony Blair.

As President Bush was flying over farmland surrounding Sedgefield, one farmer, John Mawson, was out with his 0.22 rifle, shooting rabbits on his land. As Marine One flies over his land Mr Mawson decides to take a pot shot at the helicopter which is flying at 75 feet.

The 0.22 round breaks through the front left lower window and enters the pilot (Major Phillip Johnstone) left leg, it richocet off his leg bone and exits slightly to the right of his kneecap and passes into the avionics in front of him. The round jams in the main fuse box and causes a short circuit.

Due to the injuries sustained by the Pilot, the co-pilot (Lt Commander Mark Harrison) takes command of Marine One. However, due to the short circuit caused by the jammed round the co-pilot's controls are seriously damaged. Lt Commander Harrison loses control of Marine One. The helicopter pulls up and rises to 125 feet, it then stalls and spirals down to the ground hitting it at over 100 miles an hour. It explodes on impact killing George and Laura Bush and everyone else on board. This makes President George W Bush the first president to be killed outside of the USA.

The fireball and smoke is visible from Tony Blair's house at Myrobella.

News of the crash appears on the BBC almost immediately due to the high press coverage of the state visit. Vice President Cheney is informed at the White House of the crash, initial reports say that Marine One has crashed but President Bush has survived. However after about half an hour, Tony Blair rings the White House informing them that everyone on board has perished including the president.

At this point the 25th Amendment of the US Constitution comes into effect, Richard Cheney is rushed from the White House to the Capitol where he is sworn in as the 44th President of the United States of America.

All the bodies from Marine One are taken to James Cook University Hospital in Middlesbrough. President Bush is identified by his dental records and is flown back to the United States aboard Air Force One along with all the others that had died in the crash.

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