CHICAGO—Emphasizing that the 62-year-old executive was just experiencing minor technical issues and would be back behind the podium shortly, Boeing officials scrambled to do damage control Monday after their new CEO Dave Calhoun erupted into flames during his first press conference. “I assure you, Mr. Calhoun is one of the safest board members in Boeing’s history and has never caught fire prior to today,” said Boeing spokesperson Karen Flynn, adding that Mr. Calhoun had undergone rigorous testing before being promoted to CEO, leaving the company stunned when he suddenly paused his speech, sent out an SOS signal, and burst into flames. “While we are devastated by the news, the reality of having executives is that there is always a risk that one will lose control, fly off the stage, and crash into the audience at high velocity. To the hundreds who died, or suffered severe injuries today, we sincerely apologize.” At press time, investigators found that Mr. Calhoun had failed to pay Boeing for additional safety protections that could have prevented him from exploding into millions of small, unidentifiable pieces.
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