Yesterday I flew Southwest flight 1941 from Austin to Denver with my wife and three little girls. After boarding the plane and awaiting take-off, my six-year old daughter began crying, realizing that she had left her stuffed animal—a little brown bunny—under the chairs back at our gate. At this point the cabin door had been shut and the plane was about to taxi off, so we defaulted as parents to consoling Olivia, having written off the bunny as officially lost. However, Carol (flight attendant), upon overhearing our disheveled daughter, learned the story of the forgotten bunny and said “I’ll see what I can do”.
About five minutes later, the captain comes over the intercom “We found the bunny”. No one on the plane knew what that meant (is that new pilot lingo for “prepare doors for departure and cross-check”?) except for my family. Secondly, how would they get the bunny in the cabin since the doors were already shut? Thirdly, within seconds of walking Olivia’s bunny back to us in row 10, the plane began taxiing. Did they really delay departure for…a bunny? I mean I have heard of hold ups for more serious things, but…a bunny?
Yes, a bunny. Apparently, the crew radioed out to the concourse where another employee found the bunny, walked it down the ramp, and tossed the bunny through the cockpit window.
A special thanks to captain John Karpowich, 1st officer Cliff Gurske (pictured below), and attendant Carol E. Bennett for caring enough about small passengers who can’t sleep without certain stuffed animals!