A Delta Airlines passenger has claimed that the airline did not let her sing the national anthem in honor of a slain soldier who had been killed in action.
Dr. Pamela Gaudry was on board a flight from Philadelphia to Atlanta when she learned that the aircraft was carrying the casket of a fallen soldier, Army Staff Sgt. Dustin M. Wright, 29, who was one of the four soldiers killed in ambush on patrol in Niger.
In the video, Gaudry claimed as the flight landed the pilot come out and asked everyone to be seated while the coffin was taken from the plane. She further added that was when she decided how nice it would be to sing the anthem while the body was taken away.
She then moved around in the plane and asked other passengers if they were up for the idea. She said most of the passengers were thrilled and some even started weeping at the thought.
Gaudry said she went back to her seat after speaking with fellow passengers. That is when a chief flight attendant approached her and said it is against the company’s policy to sing the national anthem.
The flight attendant also said that there are people from other countries on the plane and they might be uncomfortable with the idea.
“And I said, 'The national anthem? And there's a soldier onboard?' And she said, 'Yes, you cannot sing the national anthem. It is against company policy,’” said Gaudry.
Gaudry said she told the attendant that she had already spoken to people about singing in honor of the soldier and she will not go back telling them about the change in plan. The doctor added that the airline then made an announcement to remain seated as the body was taken off the plane.
“We all sat in silence as the honor guard took the soldier off the plane. I’m humiliated by my lack of courage to sing the national anthem in my, on American soil, with a deceased soldier on the plane,” she said.
In the end, the teary-eyed woman hoped that it would attract attention and even reach President Donald Trump.
Soon after the incident, Delta Airlines released a statement and said, “The respectful ceremony of the Delta Honor Guard is one symbol of Delta’s pledge to the men and women of the armed forces, and it represents our broad commitment to our veterans and active-duty service members. Delta does not have a policy regarding the national anthem. We have reached out to the customer and are looking into this situation.”
The incident came after Trump slammed NFL players who kneel during national anthem and said the move disrespected the American flag and its soldiers. He went even further and suggested team owners fire players who take a knee.
Gaudry posted on Facebook that she got lots of support from people and Delta called her to apologize.
Spotlight, Banner: Reuters, Jeff Haynes