Southwest Pilot Surprises His One Millionth Passenger (Video)

May 5, 2017

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It’s about time there’s some good news coming from a US airline. The past couple of weeks, we’ve seen numerous incidents — from a passenger being dragged off a plane, to an entire family being kicked off a flight and a pilot slapping a woman. But this story will warm your heart.

This week, Captain John Ritchie’s voice came over the loudspeaker on Southwest Flight 750 from Denver (DEN) to Pittsburgh (PIT). In the announcement, Ritchie explained that after retiring from the US Air Force, he became a pilot at Southwest Airlines — a position he’s held for the past 22 years. Through his career, Ritchie kept track of how many passengers he transported in Southwest’s metal.

One of the passengers on Flight 750 happened to be the one millionth traveler that Ritchie has transported. He was able to track down the exact passenger and, in honor of the occasion, Ritchie gave the passenger a bottle of Champagne. But he didn’t stop there either. He was able to track down how much the passenger paid for her ticket and he gave her an envelope of cash containing the exact amount that she paid for her ticket.

You can watch the heartwarming announcement, captured by a flight attendant, below:

It’s great to see something nice on a plane for a change. Last year, we saw a similar feel-good story when a Qantas pilot proposed to his girlfriend mid-flight on the A380 flight from Melbourne (MEL) to Los Angeles (LAX). And, of course, there are always the pilots that opt to use humor on their flights.

Congratulations to Captain Ritchie on his achievement!

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