Imagine this scenario: you’re excited to travel with your wife and sons to Las Vegas, and you brought a cake because it’s going to be your special lady’s 40th birthday. But wait, first you gotta get through JetBlue, and guess what? They’re going to label the cake “a security risk,” call the authorities, and when the police say there’s no issues, kick ’em out anyway.
This is the story of the Burke family. On May 3rd, this New Jersey family was headed to Las Vegas to celebrate the mom/wife Minta Burke’s 40th birthday. But before they attended their flight, they bought a buttercream cake from their favorite bakery in New York City.
The husband, Cameron placed the cake in the overhead bin. But a flight attendant thought this buttercream delight to be nothing but a flight risk. The plane was going from New York to Las Vegas, and that cake would critically affect that trip….ummm…nope, don’t think so. But the man and his family seemed to be harassed anyway.
“A flight attendant nicely asked me to remove the cake from that compartment, so I moved it to another one,” said Cameron, a speech pathologist from Jersey City. “She then asked me to move it to underneath the seat in front of me, I did.”
You’d think the trouble would end there. Nope. A second flight attendant approaches the family about that dastardly cake.
“You know, you could see the gestures – then she was pointing to her, did you tell him he couldn’t put anything in the overhead compartment? I had approached them, and I said everything was fine, and she said, ‘sir, this does not involve you. When she told me I had been non-compliant, then I said ‘ma’am, had you been drinking?’ because her behavior was not normal,” Burke told ABC7 News.
Port Authority officers from John F. Kennedy Airport arrived on the scene to see what all the hubbub was about. An officer interrogated Cameron, but decided that there “no wrongdoing” on the part of the family. But…JetBlue decided to kick them off the flight anyway and refund their ticket.
JetBlue alleges that Cameron yelled and cursed at the crew. The air-travel organization released a statement that backs up this claim. “(The customer) refused multiple requests from the crew to remove the items, became agitated, cursed and yelled at the crew, and made false accusations about a crew member’s fitness to fly,” the statement said.
But this Twitter video of the incident appears to show the exact opposite. We see a very calm, courtesy and collected Cameron handling the situation perfectly while one of his sons is crying.
Burke said that he never cursed at the attendants. He remained calm, the complete opposite of agitated. He said that at no point was he informed why he got removed from that flight. Hmmmmm, maybe the crew was just jealous that it wasn’t their super-tasty buttercream cake. Imagine that. But that’s just me speculating.
The good news is that Cameron and his family were able to get a flight out to Las Vegas the very next day. But this time he was taking United Airlines out of Newark, instead of JetBlue out of JFK.
Cameron now intends to file a lawsuit against JetBlue.
“I want the flight attendant fired, she has no business serving the public,” said Burke. “I hope JetBlue will retrain their staff and recreate the culture I once loved.”