MARK BINGHAM, passenger on United Airlines Flight 93, died (b. 1970) Bingham is believed to have been among the passengers who attempted to storm the cockpit to try to prevent the hijackers from using the plane to kill hundreds or thousands of additional victims on September 11, 2001. He made a brief cell phone call to his mother, Alice Hoagland, shortly before the plane went down. Hoagland, a former flight attendant with United Airlines, later left a voice mail message on his cell phone, instructing Bingham to reclaim the aircraft after it became apparent that Flight 93 was to be used in a suicide mission.
Bingham was survived by his former boyfriend of six years, Paul Holm, who says this was not the first time Bingham risked his life to protect the lives of others. In fact, he had twice successfully protected Holm from attempted muggings, one of which was at gunpoint. Holm describes Bingham as a brave, competitive man, saying, “He hated to lose — at anything.” He was even known to proudly display a scar he received after being gored at the running of the bulls in Pamplona.
A large athlete at 6 ft 4 in and 225 pounds, he also played for the San Francisco Fog, a rugby union team. The biennial Gay Rugby tournament is named in his honor (the Bingham Cup).