A couple of years ago my wife, daughter and I were flying from Tampa to London via Chicago. Leaving Tampa on a lovely September afternoon, we were about half an hour into the flight when we were told to expect turbulence as we got closer to Chicago. About half an hour later we were informed that Chicago was now closed due to an electrical storm; however we were being allowed to continue as we had a medical emergency aboard. The flight got bumpier and bumpier, and just a few minutes before landing the plane was almost flipped sideways by a gust of wind, then we were struck by lightning. When you are about to land in a storm, a blinding flash and loud bang has the same effect as a powerful laxative.
Flying into Reno, NV in 1997 with the now defunct Reno Air, my flight hit a thunder head on approach which caused a sudden drop of over a thousand feet in elevation. I was not afraid – there just was not enough time for that. The pilot tried to correct for the drop. All I can say is that’s the hardest landing short of a crash I have felt; the pilot probably has nightmares.