Airline worker tracks down cancer patient's bag, delivers it

PITTSBURGH — A cancer patient says a Southwest Airlines employee went above and beyond to help track down her missing luggage that contained important medication.

Stacy Hurt says she called customer service July 23 at Pittsburgh International Airport after her luggage failed to arrive on a flight from Nashville. The bag contained medication that helps her with the side effects of chemo for her colon cancer. It also had sentimental items like a rosary and a lucky T-shirt.

"I immediately panicked because I had chemotherapy the next day," she told KDKA-TV. "I had a lot of items in the suitcase that I needed and wanted for chemotherapy. I just started getting very emotional and I started to cry."

Sarah Rowan, a worker for Dallas-based Southwest Airlines, took the call and says she was moved to help. Her father died six years ago from leukemia.

It was after midnight when Rowan finally tracked down the luggage and the last courier had already left for the night.

So she put the bag in her car and drove it to Hurt's home at 3 a.m., leaving it on her doorstep.

Hurt found the luggage the next morning with a handwritten note inside from Rowan, apologizing for the delay and telling her to "kick that cancer's butt."

The two met in person for the first time Wednesday, when Hurt surprised Rowan with a bouquet of flowers at the airport.

Rowan told WTAE-TV it was Hurt's kindness on the phone when reporting the luggage that sparked her to action, in addition to the memory of her father.

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