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U.S. Rep. John Lewis honors Delta crew who helped when he fell ill on flight


U.S. Rep. John Lewis honored a Delta Air Lines crew who helped him when he fell ill on a flight last Saturday.

The crew of Flight 513 received Congressional certificates of appreciation from Lewis on Wednesday at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport.

“I want to thank the entire Delta flight team and the Delta attendants on the ground who helped me during this discomforting experience for their compassion and professionalism,” according to Lewis in a written statement.

Lewis, 78, was hospitalized after falling ill on a flight from Detroit to Atlanta on Saturday.

An aide said the civil rights icon was feeling dizzy and sweaty, and he was hospitalized for “routine observation.”

On the flight, the Delta crew worked to coordinate medical supplies and called Lewis a “real trooper,” adding that he was making jokes once the plane landed, according to the airline. “He even tried to walk off the plane, but was advised to wait for medical personnel,” according to Delta.

“His status is not what was important during that moment, because every single customer deserves to be treated like that,” according to a written statement from Delta flight attendant Opal Doubleday. “It’s a life, and we have a duty to help in any way possible. I am gracious for the opportunity to receive a token of appreciation from a man who has impacted so many lives.”


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About the Author

Business reporter Kelly Yamanouchi covers airlines and the airport.