“I am writing to tell you about the extraordinary kindness that was shown to me by members of Alaska Airlines who worked
“I am writing to tell you about the extraordinary kindness that was shown to me by members of Alaska Airlines who worked Flight 1176 on May 10th.”
A woman named Kathryn sent me this.
I thought it was a beautiful story.
Especially when you find out what the pilots did.
It’s easy to get disillusioned these days.
But believe me there’s a lot of good out there.
Here’s what Kathryn wrote.
It will take you about 60 seconds to read it:
I had to travel that day to attend my grandmother’s funeral.
She was 103.
This was her birthday last November
She died on May 8th.
Concetta Immacolata Mongiardo was the light of my life.
For the wake and funeral mass, I made a poster of my favorite picture of her, which is when she turned 100.
To me, this picture shows the essence of my grandmother’s nature: Gratitude.
I didn’t want anything to happen to the poster, so I used cardboard to protect it, anticipating that there would be a place on the plane where I could put it.
When I got to the gate, I showed the gate agent what I was carrying and asked if I would be able to put it in a safe place for our cross country journey.
At first, I was told that it would have to go in the cargo hold with all the regular baggage.
But as soon as I explained why I was traveling (and I started to break down), and who the cardboard was protecting (showing a smaller version of the picture), the gate agent, Lourdes Pedemonte, first started to cry with me, but then she sprung into action (taking the time to console me first).
She assured me that Nan wouldn’t have to fly in the cargo hold, and that she would work something out.
A few minutes later, Ms. Pedemonte came up to me, put her hand on my shoulder and said, “you’re all set, the pilots are going to keep Nan with them in the cockpit.”
Still being very fragile and emotional, I started to cry again.
Of course part of my emotion was grief, but a lot of it was due to the kindness Ms. Pedemonte showed me by going above and beyond to help make sure nothing happened to Nan.
She hugged me again, and offered her condolences for my loss.
When I boarded the plane, I was greeted by flight attendant Pam Keck, who, upon seeing me and what I was carrying, said, “you must be the woman with some precious cargo.”
I smiled at her, with tears in my eyes, and handed Nan over to her.
The cockpit door was open, and when Ms. Keck handed Nan over to the pilots, both of them made eye contact with me and told me not to worry, that they would take good care of Nan as we travelled across the country.
All three offered their sincere condolences.
Ms. Keck then helped me to my seat.
After what seemed to be an eternity, we finally landed.
Ms. Keck made sure Nan was waiting for me.
I thanked Ms. Keck again, and asked her to thank the pilots for me.
She said, “you can thank them yourself, there they are.”
So I looked them both in the eye, and, with my hand over my heart, thanked them for taking care of Nan.
They both said, “it was an honor” and offered their condolences.
That flight wasn’t easy.
I was sad.
I really hope Ms. Pedemonte, Ms. Keck, and the pilots know the depths of my gratitude for the kindness and compassion they showed me that day.
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