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Flight Attendant

July 9, 1989 | JACK ADLER, Adler is a Los Angeles free-lance writer
Flight attendants are trying to get the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to set a maximum for hours they may work consecutively. Their rationale: "Fatigued flight attendants will be less capable of protecting passengers in any emergency," according to Matt Finucane, safety coordinator of the 22,000-member Assn. of Flight Attendants (AFA).
January 31, 1990 | From Associated Press
A woman believed to be the nation's oldest flight attendant has retired at age 70 after logging nearly 4 1/2 years in the air during a career that began in 1948. "I had to have a goal for something, and I figured it might as well be old," Connie Walker said Tuesday after she stepped off a Northwest Airlines flight from Seoul. She said her feelings were torn. "The body is ready to quit, and the heart wants to keep going," she said.
September 14, 1986 | Herbert J. Vida
Sally J. Bane taught in elementary school for five years and no doubt was one of those teachers who prompted fathers to remark, "Gee, they didn't have teachers like that when I went to school." Now, passengers on jet planes are making those sorts of comments about pilots since Bane became one. She works for AirCal and is one of about 15 female flight captains nationwide working for a major airline.
March 12, 1989 | From United Press International
A quiet flight is transformed in an instant into a bone-cold chaos of shrieking wind, flying debris and crushing G forces as the pilot dives to save the plane. If you think the flight crew will come and take care of you, think again. The tragedy of United Airlines Flight 811 was only the most recent in a series of episodes of sudden decompression in jetliners at high altitude.
April 2, 1985 | Associated Press
Pan American World Airways reached a tentative contract agreement with its flight attendants Monday. The pact includes a pay raise and changes in work rules the airline sought in an effort to increase productivity and reduce costs. Negotiators for the company and the 6,000-member Independent Union of Flight Attendants reached the settlement about 12 hours after a union-set midnight strike deadline passed without a job walkout.
January 8, 1989 | RITA CIPALLA, Smithsonian News Service
"Paris tonight . . . Rome tomorrow. . . . Fun and adventure everywhere." "Romance! Travel! Fun! Be an air hostess." "Half the world awaits you." Sound tempting? For years, these exaggerated visions of a stewardess's life, found in many career manuals, were accepted as truth. Such descriptions only hinted at the sexism that developed in the profession, especially in terms of the airlines' requirements on age, height, weight and length of hair--not to mention marital status--for all "sky girls."
From a testy Saudi princess to a rowdy bunch of Englishmen, airline employees are seeing what they say is growing lawlessness in the air among passengers. Some passengers say declining service is making them fighting mad. "I can think of a couple of times when stewardesses and stewards were maybe having a bad day," said Ted Castello, a frequent traveler and sales manager of a Belleville, Ill., office supply company.
July 24, 1991 | From UPI
A TWA flight attendant testified Tuesday a Studio City man cursed her and twisted her arm after she ordered him to put out his cigarette on a non-smoking flight, leaving her so "frightened and immobilized" she could not do her job. "All of me was not there," Pam Martinez testified in U.S. District Court in Los Angeles, describing how she felt after the assault she said occurred in December, 1987.
April 3, 1987 | WILLIAM E. SMART, The Washington Post
If you're old enough to order a drink on an airplane, you've probably noticed some changes. The planes are faster, wider and longer. They carry more passengers. But there's something else: a new breed of flight attendants. Today's flight attendants may be male or female and range in age anywhere from their late teens to their 60s. They come in all shapes, weights and sizes (as long as it's "in proportion"), from virtually every background and geographical location.
I guess I've flown on airplanes hundreds of times by now. But a few weeks ago on a TWA flight, I noticed something I'd come to take for granted: the flight attendants. Most were middle-age women, hard-working and polite, but not servile. A far cry from the pretty young things who tended to passengers' every need in the bad old days of "Coffee, Tea or Me?" (a book written in 1969 by two stewardesses).
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