Not everyone loves to fly and those who have anxiety about air travel can sometimes experience panic attacks aboard a plane. When a girl started to have a panic attack mid-flight, a flight attendant was there to happily assist. The girl’s mother noticed that the steward was giving her daughter “special drinks” to ease her anxiety on their trip from Orlando to Newark.
Erika Jeorgean Swart had her three children on the flight and was taken aback when her 9-year-old daughter, Gabby, who had flown before, began to get anxious after take off. As a Type-1 diabetic, the anxiety was making Gabby’s blood sugar levels crash, which created an additional challenge when Erika tried to calm her daughter.
A flight attendant named Garrick stopped by to check on her, offering what he called a “special drink.”
Erika took to Southwest Airline’s Facebook post to explain the situation and praise their employee for his kindness, sharing a photo of her daughter with the flight attendant and writing: “This is Garrick, an employee of yours working flight 1264 flying from Orlando to Newark… Throughout the flight he tried making her laugh and bringing her special drinks. As we were getting closer weather was rough and there was a bit of turbulence. Gabby began having a complete panic attack on descent.”
Garrick selflessly assisted Gabby with her worries, even sitting in the empty seat next to her, as Erika explained: “During extremely rough turbulence she began crying and grabbed his arm, he gently told her she could hang on as long as she needed to. Just after this due to the extreme stress she was under her blood sugars began dangerously crashing. He got up from his seat to get her an orange juice and came right back to sit with her. She asked again if she could continue to hold his arm while the plane was landing.”
The kind steward then distracted Gabby by spending 30 minutes talking with her about what grade she was in and her family pets. His attentive nature worked and Gabby was calm again, as mom noted: “Once on the ground while taxiing to the gate he came on the intercom and announced that his friend, Gabby, in the front row overcame her fears of flying and asked for a round of applause. The whole plane clapped for her. It was a wonderful experience on Southwest. We are forever grateful to have met such a beautiful, selfless soul.”
William from Southwest was happy to hear about situation, responding: “It warms our heart to see such kindness and carrying from one of our amazing Flight Attendants, and we can’t even tell you how proud we are of your daughter for getting through the flight.”
Many people weighed in with comments, praising the attendant for his extra special service to one of the passengers, including notes like: “Nice person, need more people like him around” and “So precious! Well done Garrick and SW Airlines.”
Another commenter shared: “We flew on Southwest recently and the crew both coming and going couldn’t have been nicer! And entertaining, they had us laughing, made me forget I was flying!”