American Airlines pilot praised for stepping out of cockpit, helping with luggage

SERGIO ALVARADO-COLLANTES / / Robert Idell / Twitter

An American Airlines pilot has gained praise for leaving the cockpit and going down to the tarmac to help load luggage onto the aircraft.

A passenger on the flight, Robert Idell, caught the pilot’s good deed on video, which he filmed from the window seat of the plane.

The video clip shows the pilot carrying luggage from the tow vehicle and loading it onto the belt that takes the luggage to the cargo hold of the aircraft.

Idell took to X (formerly Twitter) to say that the pilot needed a raise and recognition, tagging in American Airlines. 

According to Idell, the flight was from Key West Airport (EYW) in Florida and the airport had been short-staffed.

“He was helping load bags to help everyone with their connections. EYW (key west) airport was short staffed and he stepped up and delivered like a true leader! Flight 4051 on January 5, 2024,” Idell posted. 

Idell went on to ask what the pilot’s name was.

In response to Idell’s post, the airline said: “We love to hear when our #AATeam is going above and beyond to assist our customers. We’ll make sure to recognize this fine performance.”

Many comments also commended the pilot’s actions, with one social media user saying the pilot likely did not want further delays to the departure and took matters in his hands by helping load the flight’s luggage.

The flight ended up arriving in Miami International Airport (MIA) 30 minutes later than expected.

While many people saluted the pilot’s action, some were not so easily impressed. One social media user on Facebook said that the pilot was simply “doing his job”. 

“When a lead isn’t available to load a flight it is up to the pilot to assist with load to insure proper weight and balance. Nothing heartwarming. It’s a part of their job,” the Facebook user added.

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