Woman, Son With Rare Skin Condition Kicked Off American Airlines Flight

Mother and son got kicked off plane for rare skin condition, get apology from American Airlines 11 photos
Photo: Facebook / Jordan Flake
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American Airlines is publicly apologizing to a woman after she and her son were kicked off a flight from South Carolina at the end of last month. The apology comes after she went public with the story on social media, where it went viral.
Jordan Flake suffers from a rare, genetic skin condition known as Ichthyosis, which turns the skin dry and scaly. Her 12-month son Jackson has also been diagnosed with it, but Jordan says she’s never been in a situation as humiliating as the one in which American Airlines crew put her.

In a post on Facebook, she writes that she and Jackson were boarding a plane (they had been visiting with the boy’s father, who was about to be deployed), and nothing seemed out of the ordinary. The staff even joked and smiled at Jackson, but things took a turn for the worst when they had finally settled in their seats.

Apparently, the crew had called another employee with the airline company, who approached Jordan with the goal of informing her that she wouldn’t be able to travel on that flight.

“He then quietly asked me about ‘my rash’ and if I had a letter from a doctor stating it was ok for me to fly. I explained to him that it was called Ichthyosis and it was a genetic skin condition,” Jordan says. “He came back and said he apologized but we wouldn’t be able to fly and we had to get off the plane. He helped me get my bags and Jackson. He talked to the pilot as we were getting off. The pilot seemed ok with it, but the flight attendant rudely said (without even acknowledging me) ‘well she doesn’t have a letter from a doctor, so...’.”

Adding insult to injury, they weren’t able to retrieve Jordan’s checked luggage. The man put her and Jackson up in a hotel, but she still had to buy changes of clothes and lotions for the both of them, while also making arrangements for her older daughter at home.

Financial complications aside, the worst part about the whole thing was the feeling of shame and humiliation Jordan was left with, she says in the same post, which has earned her considerable support online.

American Airlines was paying attention, it would seem. In a statement to People Magazine, the operator acknowledges the incident and apologizes for the way the crew handled it.

“Our goal at American Airlines is to create a welcoming environment for all of our customers,” they say. “Our Customer Relations team has already spoken to her directly and upgraded them on their American flights. We also refunded the cost of their trip as well.”

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About the author: Elena Gorgan
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Elena has been writing for a living since 2006 and, as a journalist, she has put her double major in English and Spanish to good use. She covers automotive and mobility topics like cars and bicycles, and she always knows the shows worth watching on Netflix and friends.
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