Dying dad, sick son booted off plane to applause are home in Arizona

Mother Says Passengers Applauded As Her Sick Child Got Off A Delayed Plane

SEATTLE, Feb 25 (Reuters) - A boy on a vacation with his dying father was back home in Arizona on Thursday, days after the 7-year-old suffered a dog allergy attack and the family was removed from a flight home to applause from passengers, his mother said.

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The trio was at the tail end of a bucket-list vacation to the U.S. Northwest so the boy's father, George, who has terminal throat cancer, could visit family, when the child suffered a severe allergy attack from being near a dog brought on the plane, she said.

"Shame on you for being so cruel," Christina Alvarado wrote on Facebook after her family was taken off a Monday flight from Bellingham, Washington to the Phoenix area.

She told local broadcaster KING5 that her son, Giovanni, broke out in hives and began scratching soon after the family boarded the flight.

The family alerted a flight attendant, who "smirked" and said that dogs are on every flight, Alvarado wrote on Facebook. As the family left, a number of the 151 passengers onboard the Airbus 319 applauded, she said.

See reactions on social media:

Boy with allergies and dying father kicked off a plane
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Dying dad, sick son booted off plane to applause are home in Arizona
Remember @NSwabyKing5's story of the boy kicked off the plane for having allergies? We have an update! @KING5Seattle https://t.co/kpIWTOpg1X
Family kicked off plane, applauded, due to boy's allergies calling for compassion https://t.co/3boIEspN6m #7News https://t.co/2rM4mTE8Qu
Boy removed from plane over allergies, passengers applaud https://t.co/SARl7YcoI6 @NSwabyKing5 https://t.co/Op7xXpZMf6
People clapped when this boy was escorted off a flight after an allergic reaction https://t.co/6BcS8G6NhW
SADDEST THING YOU'LL SEE ALL DAY, IS THIS WHO WE'VE BECOME? Passengers applaud family kicked off plane https://t.co/e8CUXw3VCe

Allegiant Air, the subsidiary of Las Vegas-based Allegiant Travel Company that operated the flight on which the family was traveling, said in a statement that the family was told to leave the plane and rescheduled over safety concerns for the boy.

The company said it apologized to the family for the inconvenience and booked them on a new flight that landed at Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport late on Wednesday.

The family is not seeking compensation from the airline, Phoenix broadcaster ABC15 reported. But Alvarado said the incident forced them to reschedule his cancer treatments and ruined what could be one of their last family trips.

"I am sad this has to be a memory with my dad," Giovanni told KING5.

Chris Janelli, Executive Director for the Center for Canine Behavior Studies in Connecticut said the incident might be indicative of the relationship people have with their pet companions.

"Perhaps the stewardess and the passengers were saying, dogs have as much a right to fly as somebody who is allergic to them," Janelli said.

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