A JetBlue flight attendant has died from coronavirus, making him the third cabin crew member for the airline to pass away amid the pandemic.
Ray Pabon, 51, passed away Monday and a Boston, Massachusetts-based colleague admitted he is now ‘scared to death’ to go to work after the latest death of an in-flight crew member.
Pabon got ill about a month ago and spent the last couple of weeks in hospital but was not able to recover. He lived with diabetes, his cousin said.
‘He started feeling sick at the end of March. His health started deteriorating, and they had to sedate him,’ Wanda Aviles told Boston 25 News in an interview from Florida.
Ray Pabon, 51, fell ill in March and was in hospital for two weeks before he died. The JetBlue flight attendant has diabetes and died from coronavirus
JetBlue said Pabon has not been on a flight recently but another airline employee has said they are ‘scared to death’ to go to work. JetBlue has given in-flight staff gloves and wearing provided masks is optional
‘They had sedated him because he wasn’t doing very well. On Friday, they took him off the sedation, and he never came back.’
JetBlue said Pabon has not been on a flight recently.
The family has now set up a GoFundMe page to raise $10,000 and help his mother with funeral costs.
In Massachusetts Thursday morning, there were 29,918 cases of coronavirus and 1,108 deaths reported.
Although many flights around the country have been canceled due to lack of demand, JetBlue has yet to ground many planes.
JetBlue has given in-flight staff gloves and wearing provided masks is optional.
Before Pabin passed away, two staff members had died from COVID-19.
Ralph Gismondi, 68, was based at New York’s JFK and died April 5. Jared Lovos, 28, (former crew) worked in HR at JFK and died April 9.
One employee, who wished to remain anonymous, blasted people taking advantage of cheap flights to travel during the pandemic.
‘As I’m watching my co-workers around me die, I’m scared to death to go to work now. But I don’t have a choice, because I have to pay my bills,’ the employee told Boston 25 News.
‘The people that are flying now, they shouldn’t be flying. We are flying first-time people around the country who are cashing in on a $17 flight that should be $370. They don’t understand that they are putting everyone at risk.’
‘They had sedated him because he wasn’t doing very well. On Friday, they took him off the sedation, and he never came back.’ his cousin said
The family has now set up a GoFundMe page to raise $10,000 and help his mother with funeral costs
Airlines are hopeful that U.S. passenger traffic, which has dropped by 95 per cent due to the coronavirus pandemic, will begin to recover by October but have warned that the slowdown in air travel could extend into next year and even longer.
Today there are about 5,000 planes flying around the world. A year ago there were approximately 18,000 in the sky, according to Flight Radar 24.
Estimated global airline losses from the coronavirus pandemic have climbed to $314 billion, 25 per cent more than previously forecast, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) said on Tuesday.
The Treasury Department said on Tuesday that major passenger airlines have agreed in principle to a $25 billion rescue package, ensuring airline workers have jobs until October while the industry battles its biggest-ever crisis.
Major carriers will receive 70 per cent of the funds for payroll in cash assistance that will not need to be paid back, while smaller carriers receiving $100 million or less will not need to repay any funds.
The six largest U.S. airlines – American Airlines Group Inc, United Airlines Holdings Inc, Delta Air Lines Inc, Southwest Airlines Co, JetBlue Airways Corp and Alaska Airlines – as well as four other airlines accepted the support, the Treasury said.
JetBlue said it will receive $935.8 million in payroll grants.
According to the statute, companies receiving funds cannot lay off employees before September 30 or change collective bargaining agreements and must agree to restrictions on buybacks, executive compensation and dividends.
The statute gave the Treasury the authority to demand compensation for the grants, but did not require it.
Airlines did not want to give up equity, but the Treasury demanded compensation for taxpayers.
Carriers were told they could apply for the total salaries and benefits paid in the second and third quarters of 2019, an amount that surpasses American Airlines’ current market value.
It’s possible they will need another round of government bailouts to survive.
Under the terms laid out by Treasury officials last week, the government would receive repayment on 30 per cent of the funds awarded to large carriers and warrants equal to 10 per cent of the loan amount that were priced at last week’s close.
‘We are closer than ever to almost a million airline workers knowing they will receive their paycheck and keep their healthcare and other benefits, at least through September,’ said Association of Flight Attendants President Sara Nelson, who is widely credited for the idea of aid specifically for payroll.
‘At the same time, we were able to rein in the worst corporate practices by tying this aid to restrictions on stock buybacks, executive compensation and dividends.’
Three TSA agents have died from coronavirus with 400 testing positive in 51 airports across the nation
A third official from the Transportation Security Administration employee has died from coronavirus with 405 officers testing positive at 51 airports across the country.
Dian Phipps, an officer who had worked at Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson International for 14 years, passed away on Monday the TSA announced.
Twelve officers working at the airport have all tested positive for the virus, with 11 of them involved in the screening of passengers.
‘His co-workers over the years remember him as a kind and humble person who was always fun to be around, as well as being a talented singer,’ the agency said in a statement.
The outbreak of coronavirus among TSA officers comes as the agency reports a record low number of travelers. On Tuesday, 87,534 travelers passed through airport security checkpoints, compared with more than 2.2 million on April 14 one year ago
‘We offer our heartfelt condolences to Dian’s family, friends and his TSA colleagues.’
Phipps’ death came as it was revealed more than 400 TSA staff have been infected with coronavirus.
New York’s airports are home to the highest concentration of coronavirus cases with 155 TSA officers testing positive.
JFK airport has the highest number in the country with 85 cases. Second is nearby Newark with 44 cases.
There have been 23 cases at LaGuardia, the third airport serving New York City.
TSA workers at Florida’s airports have also suffered from the infection with Miami, Fort Lauderdale and Orlando airports sharing a total of 40 cases between them.
Dian Phipps, an officer who had worked at Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson International for 14 years, passed away on Monday
Two other TSA workers have died from the virus in recent weeks.
Francis ‘Frank’ Boccabella III, 39, worked at Newark Liberty International Airport in New Jersey as an explosive detection canine handler.
He had worked for the TSA since 2004 and worked with cargo inspectors, where he screened air cargo destined for passenger aircraft before training to become a canine handler.
Frank would protect the traveling public along with his canine partner, Bullet, a six-year-old German Short-haired Pointer.
Alberto Camacho, a Branch Manager in the Acquisition Program Management office Arlington, Virginia passed away earlier this month from COVID-19.
For more than 20 years Alberto dedicated his career to both transportation and aviation security.
Alberto first joined the TSA in 2005 as a Training Manager in San Francisco, and held positions in Security Operations, the Federal Air Marshal Service and Enterprise Support.
He last served as the Central Region Deployment Branch Manager at the TSA Systems Integration Facility in Virginia where he oversaw the successful implementation of TSA’s passenger and baggage technologies.
The outbreak of coronavirus among TSA officers comes as the agency reports a record low number of travelers. On Tuesday, 87,534 travelers passed through airport security checkpoints, compared with more than 2.2 million on April 14 a year ago.
Francis ‘Frank’ Boccabella III, 39, worked at Newark Liberty International Airport in New Jersey as an explosive detection canine handler, left. Alberto Camacho, a Branch Manager in the Acquisition Program Management office Arlington, Virginia passed away earlier this month