There are many dangers civilian pilots face every time they go in the air, but getting shot at doesn't usually come to mind.

But it actually happened to Graham Hill.

He said while flying over downtown on New Year's Eve with his girlfriend, Amber Born, he was hit in the back of the head by a bullet. One month later, he said he feels very lucky to have survived this brush with death.

Hill and Born said they were going up in the air to watch the New Year's fireworks from above, making for a special way to bring in 2013.

"It was really relaxed," said Born. "We were surprised that we would not be going out."

"The coolest thing is not the downtown fireworks, but the little fireworks everywhere," said Hill, 27. "It makes the city look like a coral reef."

But in an instant, five minutes before the stroke of midnight, their flight plan changed.

"We were just about across the Mathews Bridge when everything happened," said Hill, who took Channel 4 flying after the incident. "And (I heard) a loud pop and (saw) a bullet hole here. And the next thing I knew, I was bleeding down my neck."

"I hear Graham say, 'Uh, we've been shot' and he puts his hand on the back of his head and pulls it out and there's blood on it," said Born. "So my initial reaction is, how bad is it gonna be?"

Hill was bleeding badly, but remained conscious and alert. He knew he couldn't freak out.

"And Graham as the pilot in command made sure that I was OK," said Born. "And I was worried about him. My second thought was, I'm not ready to solo this plane yet."

Born is taking flying lessons. And wants to be a pilot, too, but she didn't know she'd have to take the wheel so-to-speak so soon.

"I had her take the flight controls so I could bundle up my jacket so I could try to stop and slow the bleeding," said Hill.

Hill said flying at night can be more difficult, but even though she's still in training, he's confident had the worst happened, his girlfriend could have landed the plane.

But Hill stayed at the controls, and headed back to the airport.

"Just get it down in one piece," said Hill. "Make sure that nobody's hurt and the plane comes back in one piece."

About four minutes after he was shot, Hill said he and Born touched down safely.

Born drove him to an urgent care clinic, where doctors took over, stopping the bleeding and putting five staples in the back of Hill's head. They said shrapnel went into his cheek.

"An inch to the left it would have been fine, an inch to the right and it would have been my last flight," said Hill.

The couple then called police, and filed a report with the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office and the Federal Aviation Administration.