A man claimed he and his 4-day-old daughter were kicked off a Frontier Airlines plane as officials said the infant was too young to fly. According to reports Thursday, a good Samaritan rescued the father and daughter and brought them to her Arizona home after the airline stranded them.
Rubin Swift recently traveled to Phoenix from Ohio to pick up his daughter, Ru-Andria, whom he had just gained custody of. Swift reportedly spoke to the airlines and had all the necessary documentations of the toddler ready. The airlines said he needed a birth certificate and a note from the hospital, Banner University Medical Center, saying she is clear to fly. However, despite providing all the documentation, he was not allowed to board the plane when he reached the gate at the airport.
“I asked for my money,” Swift told AZFamily.com. “They said it would take seven days to get your money back.”
When Swift reached out to the airline, it said the policy was not to allow children below, at least, seven days old to fly.
With no money to stay at a hotel or rent a car to drive back to Ohio, Swift ended up in a difficult spot and was unable to arrange for any help. But, Swift was lucky he received help from Joy Ringhofer, a volunteer at the hospital’s NICU who had helped care for Ru-Andria.
“I didn’t expect her to say, ‘I’m coming to get you and take you home,’” Swift told the outlet. “So, I’m thinking, ‘She is going to drive me back to Cleveland’ but she actually brought me to her house and feeding me and making sure my baby is all right.”
The good Samaritan provided Swift with a place to stay till his daughter turned seven days old. Both father and daughter boarded a plane for Phoenix on Tuesday.
“We’re two different colors and she opened up her door and it never was an issue,” Swift told the station. “My color was never an issue. She loves my baby. She held her. My baby was with her all night. Who does that?”
Frontier Airlines reiterated in a statement to local media, that the airline’s policy states a child must be, at least, seven days old to fly.
“To comply with Frontier policy regarding the age of traveling infants these passengers were rebooked on a Frontier flight department on March 20,” the statement read. “We also waived any change fees associated with this change so the passenger can travel in accordance with our policy.”