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United Airlines

United Pilot Offers Hand-Written Apology for Delay

United Pilot Offers Hand-Written Apology for Delay
Joe Cortez

Captain writes notes to most passengers after flight failed to depart on time.

One United Airlines captain is getting credit for making the skies friendly again, after he took the time to write apologies when the flight in his command was delayed. Denver ABC affiliate KMGH-TV reports that the pilot, identified as John McFadden, hand-wrote his feelings to each passenger as a move to improve passenger morale.

The flight was pushed back in arriving to Denver International Airport (DEN), experiencing a ground delay prior to takeoff. During the stop, McFadden took the time to write a note to passengers on airline-branded postcards, apologizing for the delay and thanking the passengers for flying United. Instead of writing generic notes, the captain personalized some of the cards, writing the names and seat numbers on some apology notes.

“The pilot made a point to keep the passengers on the plane up to date on the departure and comfortable,” United frequent flyer Brian Heikes told KMGH. “With all the bad press about the airlines there is actually good stuff that happens, too.”

McFadden’s notion comes as United continues to fight a negative public perception due to a number of incidents in 2017. In April, a video depicting a passenger getting forcefully dragged off one of their branded flights went viral, forcing the airline to publicly apologize to the flyer and refund those aboard the flight. United’s brand was further tarnished when a passenger claimed they were moved from first class by a flight attendant without explanation. Despite this, United says the experienced positive growth in April 2017, with more passengers aboard their aircraft.

[Photo: Shutterstock]

View Comments (3)


  1. SarcasticMisanthrope

    May 18, 2017 at 4:02 am

    Perhaps the pilot of the plane where the passenger was dragged out should be forced to write a hand-written apology?

  2. KRSW

    May 19, 2017 at 9:59 am

    How long before United management reprimands / fires this guy?

  3. AirLinked


    May 22, 2017 at 10:22 pm

    Just goes to show that one employee is all it takes to tarnish a reputation and 1000 to make a good reputation.

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