Travelers Aid Going Beyond Expectations

This new feature highlights reports of our volunteers and staff members going above and beyond expectations in assisting our passengers.

A Sad and Solemn Duty

On April 24, Travelers Aid volunteer Julie Beatus at Will Rogers World Airport assisted passenger Toshiko Utsinger, who was returning to Oklahoma City with the remains of her son, Kenneth Utsinger, a police officer from Montebello, Calif. Julie partnered with the Oklahoma City Police Department to welcome Mrs. Utsinger and be a friendly face during her time of grief.


Calming First Flight Jitters

Travelers Aid/Bradley Airport volunteer, Eileen Longhi, partnered with an airline to assist a senior citizen who was flying for the first time. The passenger was very anxious when she arrived at the airport so Eileen escorted her up to the ticket counter and showed her which security line to join. At one point, the passenger broke down in tears and shared with Eileen that she was flying to California because she was about to be a grandmother for the first time. Eileen congratulated her and told her she was going to make a great grandmother and this was a great reason to be taking her first flight!


Hold that Flight - Dad is Heading to the Wrong City

A women called Travelers Aid Chicago in a last ditch attempt to keep her 85-year-old father from boarding a flight to the wrong Rochester. Her father was mistakenly booked on flight to Rochester, Minn., when he should have been flying to Rochester, N.Y. After the airline was unable to help, she called Travelers Aid and relayed that the flight was about to board. In an effort to reach the passenger as soon as possible, Travelers Aid provided the women with the local paging phone number for the airline. Fifteen minutes later the daughter called back and reported that she successfully reached her father before he boarded the wrong flight. She then sent an email: "I wanted to let you know that your employee Brian was so incredibly helpful to me this morning. He saved my 85-year-old papa from getting on the wrong flight by providing me with information that I greatly needed to find him. No one else at the airport was willing to help me find him and without his (Brian's) help my papa would have flown to the wrong city and state. He should be rewarded for his above and beyond service. Thank you very much!"


Critical Documents Found in Time

Intern Chaewon L. and Volunteer Anna N. of Travelers Aid/Newark Airport assisted an extremely anxious woman searching for her misplaced passport and boarding pass. Quick thinking Chaewon re-checked the restroom, contacted lost and found, and also spoke with nearby housekeeping workers. Meanwhile Anna stayed with the woman and helped her remain calm. After initially not finding the documents, they returned to the airline counter, where the documents were found and the passenger raced off for her flight!