'We Are Devastated': American Airlines Employee Dies on Airport Tarmac


An American Airlines employee died Thursday on the tarmac at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport in Texas.

The man, who has not yet been publicly identified, died of unspecified “traumatic injuries,” according to information provided to the Austin American Statesman by Austin-Travis County Emergency Medical Services.

The man was driving an unspecified “ground-service vehicle that struck a jet bridge,” the Austin Police Department told KXAN in Austin.

The man was pronounced dead at the scene, according to the outlet.

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“Vehicular Homicide is investigating,” APD Public Information Officer Destiny Silva told KXAN. “Right now, this is being investigated as an accidental death. The airport operations were not impacted during this incident.

“We recognize the sensitive nature, and we really appreciate the community’s patience as we fully investigate.”

Officials at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport issued a statement Thursday about the incident.

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“This afternoon AUS was notified that Austin-Travis County EMS responded to an injured airline employee. The incident occurred outside of the terminal where aircraft park at their gates. ATCEMS pronounced the employee deceased.

“There are no significant impacts to airport operations at this time. AUS staff are working closely with the airline and emergency services personnel.

“Our thoughts are with this employee and all those impacted by today’s tragic event.”

Two people on Twitter claimed that the death had delayed “many flights,” despite the claims to the contrary in the airport statement.

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The incident was still under investigation by local authorities, KXAN reported.

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George Upper is the former Editor-in-Chief of The Western Journal and was a weekly co-host of "WJ Live," powered by The Western Journal. He is currently a contributing editor in the areas of faith, politics and culture. A former U.S. Army special operator, teacher and consultant, he is a lifetime member of the NRA and an active volunteer leader in his church. Born in Foxborough, Massachusetts, he has lived most of his life in central North Carolina.
George Upper, is the former editor-in-chief of The Western Journal and is now a contributing editor in the areas of faith, politics and culture. He currently serves as the connections pastor at Awestruck Church in Greensboro, North Carolina. He is a former U.S. Army special operator, teacher, manager and consultant. Born in Massachusetts, he graduated from Foxborough High School before joining the Army and spending most of the next three years at Fort Bragg. He holds bachelor's and master's degrees in English as well as a Master's in Business Administration, all from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. He and his wife life only a short drive from his three children, their spouses and his grandchildren. He is a lifetime member of the NRA and in his spare time he shoots, reads a lot of Lawrence Block and John D. MacDonald, and watches Bruce Campbell movies. He is a fan of individual freedom, Tommy Bahama, fine-point G-2 pens and the Oxford comma.
Foxborough, Massachusetts
Beta Gamma Sigma
B.A., English, UNCG; M.A., English, UNCG; MBA, UNCG
North Carolina
Languages Spoken
Topics of Expertise
Faith, Business, Leadership and Management, Military, Politics