Newly engaged couple Michael Brown and Margaret Flavan onboard American Airlines on Dec. 3, 2011
We’d love to hear what you
think about our airline and
Please write to us at:
Want to sign up for free e-mail notification of Craig Kreeger''s column? Click here!
For many, the weeks leading up to Valentine’s Day were all about candy hearts, cards and boxes of chocolates. But at American Airlines, we’re finding that this time of year is really about finding that special connection with another person — be it a best friend or a lifelong partner. As I was thinking about this month’s column, it dawned on me that at American, we’re in the business of fostering those personal connections. Our flights connect people to their families and friends as much as we connect them for business purposes.
Every day you hear accounts of proposals and weddings — but it’s not every day you’re sitting in an aisle seat and witnessing a true act of love and commitment. For some of our customers onboard American flights this past December, that’s exactly what they experienced. Two such stories were brought to my attention recently, and in the spirit of this time of year, I’d like to share them with you.
The first connection I want to share is about our customers Michael Brown and Margaret Flavan. On Dec. 3, 2011, they headed to the Dallas/Fort Worth airport for their flight to Burbank, Calif. When they arrived at their gate, they happened to meet the captain of the flight and struck up a conversation. As Margaret left to begin getting ready to board, Mike pulled the captain aside and let him know that he was planning to propose to Margaret once they were 35,000 feet in the air.
Our captain and flight crew were onboard with the plan and helped Mike arrange the surprise in flight. Halfway through the trip, Mike was handed the control to the PA system, dropped to his knee and asked Margaret to marry him. I’m told the entire aircraft erupted as Margaret tearfully and excitedly accepted his proposal. The flight captain marked the exact spot on his flight plan where Mike had proposed and gave it to the happy couple. That flight plan is now a framed keepsake from their special moment.
The second story I want to share happened as the holidays were well under way. On Dec. 22, 2011, Tate Myrick and his girlfriend, Meredith Moore, were taking a holiday trip from Dallas/Fort Worth to Vail, Colo. For Tate, this wasn’t just any ski vacation, as he planned to propose to Meredith during the flight. He chose this moment because, for Tate and Meredith, it was a special flight. Five years earlier, to the day, they met on that exact same American Airlines flight. In 2006, as they took their seats in row 10, they had no idea they were about to find their best friend and lifelong partner.
Tate Myrick and his fiancée, Meredith Moore, celebrating their engagement
With the help of our dedicated employees on the ground and the incredible flight crew, Tate proposed to Meredith halfway through the flight. Tate had worked ahead of time to arrange for our flight crew to play his and Meredith’s special song, “Heart and Soul” by Hoagy Carmichael, throughout the cabin. As the song started, he asked Meredith to marry him. After she said yes — enthusiastically, I’m told — our crew treated the couple to champagne and snacks as they soaked in the moment and well wishes from fellow passengers who witnessed the start of their future together.
I love these stories because they remind us that traveling is more than just getting from point A to point B. They show us that traveling is often a catalyst to being connected, whether it’s for business, for pleasure — or even better — for love. Most of all, I appreciate how our employees recognized important moments in the lives of our customers and helped ensure that their experiences were the very best they could be.
As we continue to celebrate meaningful connections, I want to hear more about how travel keeps you connected. Did you meet your soul mate onboard American? Did you discover a lifelong friend sitting next to you? I want to hear your stories. Post your photos and stories on our Facebook page, www.facebook.com/aa.
As always, feel free to reach out to us with questions or comments at www.aa.com/customerrelations
Craig S. Kreeger
Senior Vice President – Customer Experience