Not everyone can get home for the holidays, especially if they have to work, but Pierce Vaughan's father decided he would bring home to her while she was on the clock. Per WXIA, the Delta flight attendant was on the schedule for both Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, meaning it would be the first Christmas she spent without her family as she catered to passengers in the air. But her dad, Hal, was determined that Vaughan have some company, so the Ohio man took advantage of a Delta rule that lets immediate family of flight attendants fly for free on standby, as long as there's an available seat, and hopped on the handful of flights that his daughter was working Monday and Tuesday. Mike Levy, a passenger on one of the flights from Fort Myers to Detroit, sat next to Hal and said the devoted dad told him he'd booked six flights in total, USA Today reports.
"What a fantastic father!" Levy wrote on Facebook in a post that ended up going viral, with more than 29,000 shares as of Thursday morning. Vaughan shared Levy's post, which included a picture of her dad smiling big next to Levy, and told her mother back home watching the pets: "Look ma we made it!" Hal had never flown on one of Vaughan's shifts before, and it was actually his first trip after some tough months of physical therapy: He'd broken his neck and it was initially feared he'd never walk again. In a statement to NBC Chicago, Delta thanked all of its employees who work over the holidays, and also praised the "awesome" Hal's efforts to spend Christmas with Vaughan, "even while crisscrossing the country at 30,000 feet." (A SkyWest pilot proposed to his flight attendant girlfriend in front of their passengers.)