An elderly woman was forced to scream and holler for help after being abandoned in a wheelchair at the airport after a flight from Cuba. The airline’s compensation: a paltry $225. She’s not happy about it either.
94-year-old Rachele Jamieson, from Chilliwack British Columbia, was subjected to a horrific travel experience after her return flight from Cuba. Jamieson, who’d flown Sunwing Airlines, was completely forgotten by the airline after deplaning at her final destination in the Canadian airport of Vancouver. Then, after waiting more than a half-hour, the 94-year-old woman was finally remembered by the original airport employee who’d wheeled her off the plane the first time.
According to a report from the Cranbrook Daily Townsman, Jamieson normally uses a walker to get around, but like many elderly travelers decided to use a wheelchair during her time at the airport. After her vacation to Cuba, she returned home aboard her Sunwing Airlines flight which was several hours late. Upon arriving, she was deplaned in the chair and pushed off to the side, told that someone would be back for her.
As she watched the passengers stream by, she figured she wouldn’t have to wait long before the employee returned and wheeled her to meet her waiting friend. However, she was wrong. Soon it became apparent that they’d forgotten her when the crowd of passengers and staff left. By now it was around three in the morning. When the lights dimmed, Jamieson knew she was in trouble and had been forgotten.
Sadly, she was forced to scream for help and at one point considered pulling a fire alarm to perhaps get someone’s attention. And then, according to the Cranbook report, the tears came.
Finally, the employee who’d wheeled her off realized he’d forgotten and returned to get her, finally getting her through customs and to her awaiting friend. Adding insult to injury, Jamieson had apparently paid for an “elite seat” on her Sunwing flight but didn’t get one, causing some pain in her back.
After returning home, Jameison apparently has suffered from nightmares and confusion from the incident. After contacting her travel agent, she was informed that Sunwing would reimburse the $225 elite seat fee. However, Jamieson is holding out for more, noting in the Cranbook report that she paid over four thousand dollars for the trip.
She’s currently chosen not to sue Sunwing, on the advice of her nephew, because, WestJet recently announced they are purchasing Sunwing. Certainly, neither airline wants an incident like this as the backdrop to their recent acquisition announcement.
Editor’s note: this was updated to reflect the more accurate time the woman waited – which was around .5 hours, not 3.5 hours as originally published.