A 6-year-old boy was believed to be trapped in a flying balloon, a single mother gave birth to eight babies and the world lost the King of Pop.
Take a look at the 18 most shocking moments of 2009!
Shocking Moments of 2009
18. Carrie Prejean Dethroned
The former Miss California sparked controversy during the Miss USA pageant when she said she didn't believe in gay marriage. In June, Prejean was dethroned for reportedly breaching her contract.
17. The State Dinner Party Crashers
Michaele and Tareq Salahi attended the president's State Dinner but were not on the list of invited guests. Michaele also posted photos on Facebook of her with President Obama and Vice President Biden.
16. Michael Phelps Marijuana Controversy
Photos of the Olympic swimmer smoking marijuana surfaced in February. Phelps immediately issued a public apology to fans.
15. Christian Bale's On-Set Rant
An audio recording of a profanity-laced tirade was leaked from the set of “Terminator Salvation.” Bale was incredibly angry after the director of photography interrupted filming.
14. 'Farrah's Story'
Farrah Fawcett let cameras into her life while she traveled to Germany for cancer treatment. The documentary received rave reviews and aired on NBC in May. Fawcett lost her battle with cancer on June 25.
13. Miracle on the Hudson
US Airways pilot Chesley B. “Sully” Sullenberger landed his plane in the Hudson River and all 155 passengers survived.
12. Erin Andrews' Peephole Video
The ESPN reporter was filmed through a hotel room's peephole while she walked around naked.
11. Sarah Palin Resigns
In July, the former VP hopeful announced she would not seek re-election and she resigned as Governor of Alaska. In November, Palin released the memoir “Going Rogue: An American Life.”
10. Jaycee Dugard Found Alive
Dugard was reunited with her family after being held captive for 18 years. The 29-year-old shared her story with People magazine, saying, “I'm so happy to be back.”
9. Natasha Richardson's Deadly Ski Accident
The actress died following a ski accident on a beginners' slope in Montreal. Richardson was flown to Lenox Hill Hospital in NYC where she passed away on March 18 at the age of 45.
8. Balloon Boy Hoax
Audiences were glued to their TV sets when it was believed 6-year-old Falcon Heene was trapped inside a flying balloon. It was later revealed Heene was never inside the aircraft and he was hiding inside his family's attic.
7. Oprah Announces End of TV Show
The media mogul began to cry on her talk show when she announced she would step down after 25 seasons on the air.
6. Nadya Suleman Becomes Octomom
Suleman became a household name after giving birth to octuplets via cesarean section in February. The single mother already had six other children and the octuplets brought the total to 14.
5. Mackenzie Phillips Admits Affair With Father
In an interview on “The Oprah Winfrey Show,” the actress revealed engaged in a sexual relationship with her father, musician John Phillips. She wrote about her incestuous relationship and drug abuse in the memoir “High on Arrival.”
4. David Letterman Extortion Scandal
The “Late Show” host admitted on his show that he was the victim of an extortion plot. Letterman also confessed to sexual relationships with female staff members.