GERMANTOWN, Wis. – A Wisconsin widow is upset with Southwest Airlines after she claims flight attendants wouldn’t allow her to make a phone call after receiving a text message from her suicidal husband. Karen Momsen-Evers told WTMJ her husband texted her moments before a flight was set to take off from New Orleans to Milwaukee on April 3, telling her he was going to kill himself.
“I started shaking the minute I got the text. I was panicked,” Momsen-Evers told WTMJ. “I didn’t know what to do.”
Momsen-Evers said she was able to text him back, “No, no,” and when she tried to call him, a flight attendant reportedly slapped the phone down and instructed her to put the phone in airplane mode.
“I begged her. I said I’m sure someone can make an emergency phone call,” she said, showing the flight attendant the text message, but the flight attendant cited FAA regulations and said there was nothing she could do.
Momsen-Evers reportedly called police when the plane arrived at the gate and was met by officers at her house who told her that her husband, Andy, had killed himself.
“I go to sleep at night thinking what could I have done? What should I have done?” Momsen-Evers said.
Southwest offered a statement to WTMJ: “Our hearts go out to the Evers family during this difficult time. … Flight attendants are trained to notify the Captain if there is an emergency that poses a hazard to the aircraft or to the passengers on-board. In this situation, the pilots were not notified.”
Said Momsen-Evers: “The pain of knowing something could have been done, it breaks my heart.”