Spirit Airlines has backed down.
“Dying Vietnam veteran Jerry Meekins is getting his money back from Spirit Airlines’ tightfisted boss after all.” (FOX News). Meekins is dying of cancer and after buying the ticket was told by his doctor that he was too ill to fly.
After a week of criticism from veterans around the nation, Spirit CEO Ben Baldanza issued a statement Friday afternoon saying he would personally refund Meekins’ $197 airfare, and that the discount carrier would make a $5,000 donation to the Wounded Warrior Project.”
Up until yesterday (Thursday, 5-3-2012) Baldanza refused to budge, saying that since Meekins hadn’t bought their travelers insurance, he wasn’t getting a refund. However, two Facebook campaigns, “Boycott Spirit Airlines” and another demanding he lose his job, quickly gathered a huge list of supporters, and bloggers everywhere joined in, in addition.
Faced with the financial loss to his company, and very possibly the loss of his job, this Scrooge finally agreed to give the poor old vet his fare money back.
“Sometimes we make mistakes,” Baldanza said. “In my statements regarding Mr. Meekins’ request for a refund, I failed to explain why our policy on refunds makes Spirit Airlines the only affordable choice for so many travelers, and I did not demonstrate the respect or the compassion that I should have, given his medical condition and his service to our country.”
Yeah. Well now, there’s a true fact or two. Spirit Airlines has a Board of Directors like any other corporation, and they hire and fire CEO’s like him. This arrogant prick may have waited too long before showing a human side to the company and with any luck, he’ll be in an unemployment line soon. We’ll see.