U.S. Airways has been forced to apologize to a U.S. Army Special Forces soldier after one of the airlines flight attendants reportedly refused to hang up his medal-strewn jacket after he boarded Flight 1930 from Portland, Oregon, to Charlotte, North Carolina, yesterday, WSOC TV reported.
When First Sargent Albert Marle asked the unnamed flight attendant to hang up his “Dress Blues” uniform, she reportedly refused, replying that the coat closet was reserved for first-class passengers only and that he was seated in coach. The response shocked first-class passengers, some of whom immediately offered their seats to Sgt. Marle, but the soldier politely declined and returned to his seat. First-class passenger Brian Kirby told WSOC TV:
Her response wasn’t that there’s not space in the coat closet or “I’ve hung too many jackets up”. It was just simply, “Our airline policy says I’m not going to do it, so I’m not going to do it.” I was really appalled at not only the way she looked at him but the way she spoke to him — in an angry way.
Another first-class passenger — Jon Dahlberg — then reportedly took the jacket from the “humble” Sgt. Marle and hung it behind his own seat. He said that “there’s a difference between policy and doing what is right”.
The episode quickly spread all over the social media, prompting many users to condemn the airline for its employee’s “shameful” treatment of Sgt. Marle. (Scroll down for the video.)
1. Army Ranger and combat veteran: First Sargent Albert Marle (pictured before his flight yesterday) was wearing this jacket lined with medals when he boarded Flight 1930 from Portland, Oregon, to Charlotte, North Carolina.
Mr. Kirby tweeted:
Do not fly US Air, I have just witnessed a US soldier heavily decorated disgraced. Will be sharing with other media outlets ASAP.
Others responded in similar fashion and later in the afternoon, U.S. Airways issued a formal apology for the flight attendant’s alleged response. The airline was reviewing the incident internally, it said, and wanted to thank Sgt. Marle for his service. A spokesman added:
We have a long and proud history of serving our military members and hold the men and women who serve our country in the highest regard.
But how can this flight attendant react like this?!
2. When Sgt Marle asked a US Airways attendant to hang up his ‘Dress Blues’ uniform, she reportedly refused, saying the that closet was for first-class passengers only and he was seated in coach (file image).
3. Numerous first-class fliers offered their seats to Sgt Marle, but the decorated soldier politely declined their offers and remained seated in coach. Above, the soldier was wearing his uniform to job interviews.
4. Meanwhile, Mr Kirby’s wife, Laura, tweeted the airline directly, saying: ‘@USAirways is it really in your policy to disrespect brave men such as Sergeant Marle?’
5. Mr. and Mrs. Kirby (pictured speaking to WSOC TV Channel 9 yesterday) said of the flight attendant: ‘Her response was just simply,”Our airline policy says I’m not going to do it, so I’m not going to do it”‘.
6. According to officials at Fort Bragg (pictured), the medals of Sgt Marle’s jacket show he is qualified in the fields of Ranger, Pathfinder, Air Assault, Special Forces and is likely serving in an airborne unit.
And here is the video:
Source: WSOC TV.
Share this story with your friends and let us know what you think of it in the comments below.