The wife of an airline employee who hijacked a plane in Seattle had recorded their seven happy years of marriage on Instagram, calling him ‘the man who keeps me laughing’.
Richard Russell has been revealed to be the man who stole an Alaska Airlines jet from the Seattle-Tacoma Airport and took it for an hour-long joyride before crashing on an island in a ball of flames on Friday evening.
His wife Hannah’s Instagram is chock full of photos from happier times during the couple’s life in Seattle, where the pair moved to after they met in school in 2010.
Rich’s job as an airport grounds service agent provided him and Hannah with the opportunity to travel the globe, enjoying adventures everywhere from Alaska to Mexico to France.
The wife of Richard Russell, the man who reportedly hijacked an airplane in Seattle on Friday and took it for an hour-long joyride before crashing on an island in a ball of flames on Friday evening, had documented her seven-year-long marriage to the 29-year-old on Instagram
Hannah, pictured with Rich on a hike at Neakahnie Mountain last September, described her husband as ‘the man who keeps me laughing’ in one of many happy Instagram posts
Rich’s job as a grounds service agent for Horizon Air at Seattle-Tacoma International allowed the couple to travel the world together, touring everywhere from Alaska to Mexico to France
The happy husband portrayed on Hannah’s Instagram is a far cry from the self-described ‘broken guy’ who reportedly committed suicide by plane crash on Friday evening.
At around 8pm the Horizon Air employee stole a 76-seater Horizon Air turboprop Q400 from a maintenance area at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport and took to the skies, despite not having any apparent flying experience.
While he was in the air, Russell described himself to air traffic controllers as ‘just a broken guy’ with ‘a few screws loose’.
Witnesses described seeing the aircraft performing barrel rolls and loop-the-loops as the military planes directed it away from highly-populated areas and towards Ketron Island.
‘This is probably jail time for life, huh? I would hope it is for a guy like me,’ Rich says in an audio clip released by authorities.
Minutes later the jet crashed into the islands in a ball of flames.
The selfie above shows Hannah and Rich during an aerial tour of the Grand Canyon in 2016
The couple traveled to Puerto Rico earlier this year, where Hannah Instagrammed a photo of them sitting on the beach with the caption: ‘I’m so thankful for this man!’
Hannah marked six years of marriage to Rich in January in a post which she captioned: ‘I’m so happy to have found such a kindred soul. Happy 6 years’