The wreckage of AirAsia Flight QZ8501 surfaced today in the Java Sea off the coast of Indonesia. It is assumed that all 162 people on board perished, although some families are hoping for survivors.
"I know the plane has crashed, but I cannot believe my brother and his family are dead," Ifan Joko told the Associated Press. "We still pray they are alive."
However, 23 people who were scheduled to be on the fateful flight missed the plane. Some of those folks are crediting God for choosing them to remain alive (video below).
"Thanks, God," Nicole Go told ABC News. "We were supposed to be on that flight on the 28th. It's eerie."
"This is a special Christmas gift from God that we missed the flight," added Anggi Mahesti, who also missed the flight. “We are so thankful to our God."
"Thank you, Jesus," no-show passenger Chandra Susanto wrote on Facebook. "Your plan is so beautiful. Our family avoided ... awful danger."
"My father became ill, so we had to cancel our flight," Susanto told the Daily Mail.
"I found out about the flight when my sister called me," he explained. "She was so scared. She had seen the news on TV."
"I am very thankful to God for his mercy for me and my family," Susanto said. "But I am so sad and very sorry for the people on the plane."
"Our lives have changed," he added. "We are so grateful. We have an opportunity to be the best people we can and to help others. We are so thankful to God."