New Mexico mother-of-two Jennifer Riordan was partially sucked through the window of a South West Airline Plane shortly after one of the engines exploded about 20 minutes into the flight on Tuesday, in a harrowing incident witnessed by passengers.

According to CNN, a blast happened shortly after take-off, and a piece of shrapnel flew off and shattered a window next to Mrs. Jennifer Riordan and causing a violent depressurization that nearly sucked the woman out of the window of the South-West Airlines flight on April 17 and she hung out of the plane for several minutes.

What we know

This prompted a desperate effort among flight attendants and passengers to save the woman (identified as Jennifer Riordan, 43). She was a mother to 12-year-old daughter Averie and 10-year-old son Joshua, and she had been married for 21 years to her husband, Michael.

She was also an accomplished business leader who worked for Wells Fargo Bank as vice president of community relations. Mrs. Riordan had traveled to New York for a business meeting before the tragic accident.

Jennifer Riordan sustained critical injuries from nearly being sucked out of the aircraft window. However, with the joint efforts of both the flight attendants and passengers, they managed to pull her back in. Jennifer Riordan was seriously injured and would have died immediately, but a certified nurse on board managed to keep her alive long enough by giving her CPR for about 20 minutes.

The 43-year-old died shortly after she was rushed to the hospital.

Seven other victims suffered minor injuries.

The hero pilot that saved the plane

There was pandemonium on board as the plane dropped by 1,000 feet per minute before the hero captain Tammie Jo Shults, a former Navy fighter pilot and one of the first women to fly an F-18, regained control of the flight and took the plane into a sharp descent and made an Emergency Landing at 11.23 AM at Philadelphia International Airport.

The passengers and flight attendants also managed to close the broken window by fitting in clothes and boxes to prevent other passengers from being sucked out as well.

The last time a passenger died in an accident on a United States airlines was 2009, when 49 people on board and one on the ground where killed when a continental Express plane crashed on a house near Buffalo, New York.

Tuesdays emergency broke a string of eight straight years without a fatal accident involving a US airliner.