Absurdly Driven looks at the world of business with a skeptical eye and a firmly rooted tongue in cheek. 

Moms worry, and this mom was no exception.

I know this because I happened to see a tweet emitted by Lynn Ober and then talked to her.

A week ago, her 16-year-old daughter Ashley was taking a Delta Air Lines flight from Baltimore to JFK on her own.

Ashley is deaf. She'd only flown alone once before.

Her mom told me: 

In that instance, I was able to get her right on the plane and a family member picked her up at the other end. This time, she went through security alone and wanted to be independent.

Those who can hear can never truly know what someone who can't experiences.

But when Ashley got on this Delta flight, she suddenly had a strange experience -- a surprise.

A handwritten note from a flight attendant.

It read: 

Hi, Good Morning Ashley. 

My name is Janna and I will be your Flight Attendant on today's flight to JFK. There are two buttons above your head. A yellow one that controls the reading light and a big gray one with a person on it that you can use to call me if you need anything. 

In the case of emergency, the nearest exit is behind you. Those are our over-wing exits.

Please don't hesitate to ask if you need any assistance. Again, my name is Janna and welcome aboard our CRJ 200 aircraft.

Ashley immediately took a picture and sent it to her mom.

The family lives in Washington County, Maryland and Ashley was on her way to the Rochester Institute of Technology/National Technical Institute for the Deaf's Exploring Your Future program.

Her mom told me: 

Accessible communication can be difficult for the deaf community. It's great when someone gets it right.

Airlines are often upbraided for their deficiencies -- often quite rightly. Delta isn't immune.

Every day, however, airline employees offer the very sorts of human gestures that prolong the idea that airline customer service still exists.

At the end of last year, for example, a United Airlines flight attendant squatted and turned himself into a makeshift walker so that an elderly woman could get to the restroom.

A San Francisco-based Delta flight attendant told me that the employee on Delta's flight --who works for one of Delta's regional airlines -- didn't have to do what she did.

She said: 

This is not standard practice. We do certain things for the passengers depending on the situation. It is not surprising that she would do this for this girl.

In Ashley's case, you can imagine that the Flight Attendant's note made her feel just a little more comfortable.

Isn't that what airlines are supposed to do?

Published on: Jul 14, 2019
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