United Loses 80-Year-Old, Treats Her Like 'Lost Luggage'

North Carolina family is none too happy
By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 3, 2018 7:38 AM CST
In this Wednesday, March 15, 2017, photo, people stand in line at a United Airlines counter at LaGuardia Airport in New York.   (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)
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(Newser) – It's not brain surgery, but United Airlines kinda botched this one. The company put an 80-year-old woman with partial blindness on the wrong flight, sending her to Denver instead of North Carolina—and left her family in no mood to play nice, WRAL reports. "How is it possible that a woman got on a plane that she did not have a boarding pass for and is now in another state?” says Mikki Paradis, daughter-in-law of Maria Larios, who was flying from El Salvador to Raleigh-Durham for her daughter's brain surgery. The family had requested special assistance for Larios, but United apparently gave her the wrong boarding pass at a Houston layover and she got on the wrong plane.

"They were like, 'Oh yeah. We made a mistake. ... But it's not a big deal. We've already got her on a flight to Raleigh, and we gave her a meal voucher,'" says Paradis. United says it's been in contact with Larios' family and is investigating "so that we can prevent this from happening again." But Paradis insists they were too casual: "You lost a person, and the whole time they were treating me like they lost my luggage," she says. It's not the first wrong-person-on-a-plane dilemma in recent months, CNN reports. Last December, two brothers boarded an All Nippon Airways flight from LA to Tokyo when only one was supposed to—so the plane turned back after four hours. TV personality Chrissy Teigen was on board and tweeted about her "flight to nowhere."

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