Traveling by air can come with an abundance of inconveniences; luggage fees, tight seat, short layovers, and delayed flights all can ruin one’s travel experience. Thankfully, lost luggage is a rare occurrence, but when it happens, it’s the worst inconvenience of them all.
Unfortunately, in July a Southwest Airlines passenger experienced the traumatic ordeal first hand, but thankfully one employee went above and beyond to make sure that luggage was returned to the owner.
Passenger Stacy Hurt was flying from Nashville to Pittsburgh last month and quickly contacted customer service when her luggage did not arrive at Pittsburg International Airport. Hurt was panicking about the missing bags because it contained important medication that aids her with the side effects of chemo treatments for her colon cancer.
Her bag also contained her lucky t-shirt and a rosary which are two items that have great sentimental value. She began to worry in fear that her bag wouldn’t show up in time for her chemo appointment the following day.
Hurt told KDKA-TV, "I immediately panicked because I had chemotherapy the next day. I had a lot of items in the suitcase that I needed and wanted for chemotherapy. I just started getting very emotional and I started to cry."
Thankfully Dallas-based Southwest Airline worker Sarah Rowan was on the other end of that phone call and knew she had to spring into action and do something right away. Rowan’s father had died six years ago from leukemia, and she felt compelled to help.
It wasn’t until the next day that Rowan was able to track down the missing luggage. What she does next will bring tears to your eyes; Rowan herself took the luggage and drove it all the way to Hurt’s home at 3 a.m., and left it on her doorstep.
Hurt was reunited with her luggage the next morning, with a surprise handwritten note inside from Rowan that read, “Sorry for the delay getting your bag to you. Myself and my Southwest family are thinking of you and wishing you all the best. Kick that cancer’s BUTT!”
Hurt took to Facebook to share the heartfelt words, and express she was moved by the unexpected act of kindness. She wanted to share the note with the rest of the world to let other cancer survivors know that there are great people out there who have their backs.
In a statement to People, Hurt said, “I was bawling, it was so overwhelming. This young lady brought this luggage herself in the middle of the night. I couldn’t believe it. Who does this type of thing?”
Last week, the two women finally met in person when Hurt surprised Rowan with a lovely bouquet of flowers at the Pittsburgh International airport.
Southwest Airlines noted in a statement to ABC News, “We are very proud of Sarah’s kind, empathetic actions that represent the best of Southwest hospitality and the legendary customer service that our wonderful employees aim to deliver every day.” With all of the viral airline scandals this year, it's refreshing to hear a positive story for a change.
Banner/thumbnail image credit: Flickr user ERIC SALARD