Anyone who’s flown the friendly skies before probably knows that the business of flying can be decidedly unfriendly at times.
Between oversold seats, bad weather, flight delays and missed connections, flying can be downright harrowing on days when travelers get unlucky.
One recent incident, however, helps prove that a small act of kindness can help make a bad situation a little bit brighter for everyone involved. This story is sure to warm your heart.
Last week, when American Airlines Flight 2354 was diverted to Wichita Falls, Texas — unexpectedly straying from its route from Los Angeles to Dallas-Fort Worth due to bad weather — the captain decided to make everyone’s surprise visit a little more pleasant. How? He ordered 40 pizzas for the 159 passengers who would be stuck in Wichita Falls until morning.
An airport employee at the regional Wichita Falls airport, Josh Raines, shared a video on Twitter that he filmed of the pilot personally walking Papa John’s pizzas over to passengers from the delivery car. Watch the video below to hear bystanders saying, “What a guy.”
@AmericanAir The Captain of Flight 2354 bought pizza for everybody who was stuck in Wichita Falls Regional airport after a weather diversion. I don’t think I’ve seen this before. pic.twitter.com/sLmo76ckUB
— Aldo Raine (@J_reigns2) September 7, 2018
Twitter users weighed in on the act of kindness with many, like @Newadventureho1, saying they would be thrilled to fly with such a generous and thoughtful pilot.
— Newadventureholidays (@Newadventureho1) September 12, 2018
Other users weighed in to say that they, too, had experienced a situation where a pilot took charge and ordered dinner. @IamLHut wrote on Twitter: “Our Delta Airlines pilot did the same thing when we were diverted from the Atlanta airport to Montgomery, Alabama this summer. Bad storms in Atlanta kept us for hours, so they ordered pizza and the Montgomery police department delivered to us! Love @Delta airlines!”
Our Delta Airlines pilot did the same thing when we were diverted from the Atlanta airport to Montgomery, Alabama this summer. Bad storms in Atlanta kept us for hours, so they ordered pizza and the Montgomery police department delivered to us! Love @Delta airlines!
— Lea (@IamLHut) September 10, 2018
Jeff Raines, the captain who ordered in the pizzas, later wrote about the incident on Facebook. The pilot was humble about his good deed.
“Thanks for the compliments however this was a ‘TEAM’ effort,” the captain wrote, according to CNN. He continued:
My First Officer was on the telephone with crew tracking / hotel desk arranging for our release and hotels for the entire crew. The Flight Attendants manned a galley cart from the aircraft serving waters, juice, and sodas to all the passengers in the terminal. All while the Envoy SPS Personnel were arranging for a bus, re-booking flights, and answering a flurry of questions from these passengers. Thanks to everyone for your help – there is no “I” in TEAM.
While a heartwarming story, it’s also a nice reminder of just how much goes on behind the scenes to ease worries when situations go astray — and it’s a good nudge to do a kind thing for others when people are faced with an unfortunate prospect.
And, if in doubt, pizza always helps!