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turism&travel : Korean Airlines deems woman 'too frail' to fly, turns her away

Monday 16 May 2011

She had been due to fly to South Korea with her daughter for a special mother's day treat.

But it had also been Crystal Kim's last wish to 'die at home' after being diagnosed with stage four breast cancer in February.

Instead Ms Kim found herself in a hotel at the weekend after being turned away by Korean Airlines for looking 'too frail' to fly.

The dying mother had approval from two doctors and a note clearing her to fly over the weekend from Seattle, but the carrier still thought Ms Kim may not be up for the long haul flight, Penny Pfaelzer, of Korean Airlines said.

She also said other passengers would be 'traumatised' if another passenger were to die while in flight and called the situation unfortunate.

'I wanted to take my mom there for Mother's Day,' Ms Kim's daughter Mimi told King5 News. 'It was her last wish, to go home.

'The first thing out of the ticket agent's mouth was, "Is she OK to fly? We need a doctor's note,"' she added.

The airline did put the Kims up in a hotel to enable them to return to their doctor on Monday to get another letter.

But Korean Airlines were reportedly still dissatisfied and the plane left without the pair.

'It's absolutely ludicrous, heartless and unbelievable,' Mimi Kim said. 'Her vitals are normal...she is fit for travel.'

Rivals Delta Air Lines has reportedly said it would fly the Kims to South Korea tomorrow.

Mr Kim was diagnosed with stage four breast cancer in February.

She had hoped that a combination of eastern medicine and mainstream treatment could give her more time.

She had also planned to see the country she was born in and get back in touch with relatives.

Autor: eTurboNews