THE INC. LIFE

A Southwest Employee Did Something So Kind That It Might Restore Your Faith in Customer Service (or Even Humanity)

Sometimes people do the right thing. Even when they work for an airline.

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BY Chris Matyszczyk - 10 Aug 2017

And the bags were on another plane.

PHOTO CREDIT: Getty Images

Absurdly Driven looks at the world of business with a skeptical eye and a firmly rooted tongue in cheek.

 

It was an everyday story of airline life.

Stacy Hurt of Bridgeville, Pennsylvania managed to get on an earlier flight from Nashville to Pittsburgh.

Her luggage, though, was still on the flight she was supposed to have taken.

Then that flight was canceled.

Most of us are used to such things. We wait for the airline to deliver our bags and, in the meantime, wonder whether to brush our teeth with our finger.

In Hurt's case, it was a little different.

As WPXI-TV reports, she has cancer. Stage 4 colon cancer. And her vital medication was in her luggage.

She called Southwest. Someone called Sarah answered. Hurt explained her circumstances.

"She said, 'I'll have it delivered to you no matter what time it is,' and she left me a voicemail at 2.53 a.m. telling me that she was delivering my luggage to my house herself. And it was on my porch when I woke up in the morning with all my items."

Sarah didn't just leave her a voicemail. She also left a handwritten note with the luggage.

"Sorry for the delay getting your bag to you! Myself and my Southwest family are thinking of you and wishing you all the best. Kick that cancer's BUTT! With love, Sarah from PIT," it read.

Airline employees don't currently enjoy an excess of admiration.

Much of that is because of the position in which their employers have put them in. They're police officers first, jailers shortly afterward and only occasionally behave as if they're in the customer service business.

But here was someone who, in the middle of the night, was prepared to go out of her way for the most fundamentally human reason -- and, in the same moment, reflect on her employers in a way that few surely do.

Sarah had done what she'd done because by the time Hurt's luggage had reached Pittsburgh, all of the couriers the airline uses had gone home.

She must have decided that this was simply the right thing to do. How many people, though, would have waited till the first courier came on duty in the morning?

My own personal experiences with Southwest have been deeply varied. The last time made me want to not fly the airline again. That's what one or two employees can do to a customer.

Just one employee can do the opposite too.

In two weeks' time, Hurt has to endure her 52nd. chemotherapy treatment.

If you've ever known anyone who has cancer and has had to go through something similar, you'll know how hard this is.

Just one human gesture from an airline employee made Hurt feel a little better. For just a fleeting day.