A teenager died on a recent Delta Air Lines flight traveling to Atlanta from Seattle, after the teen suffered a medical emergency shortly after takeoff.
The boy, 16, whose name has not been released, was reportedly traveling with family after the holidays and was on his way to Atlanta, according to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
The youth was the son of a soldier from the 16th Combat Aviation Brigade of the 7th Infantry Division out of Joint Base Lewis-McChord at Fort Lewis, Washington, a U.S. military official told CNN. The teen was said to be traveling with his mother and was flying to Atlanta to rejoin his father who had been re-stationed, the official said.
Shortly after takeoff the pilot radioed that a passenger was suffering a medical emergency and the flight had been redirected to an airport in Spokane, Wash., Spokane Fire Assistant Chief Brian Schaeffer revealed during a press conference.
Joe Ryan, a passenger onboard, revealed that the pilot made an announcement over the plane's intercom and informed the passengers of the emergency. Ryan added that teen was taken to the rear of the aircraft where flight attendants attempted life-saving measures, according to Fox.
Emergency officials said the teen suffered an medical incident in-flight, and passed away from natural causes prior to the emergency landing, as reported by The Associated Press,
Schaeffer told the Journal-Constitution that the teen did have a pre-existing condition, but family members insisted the teen was healthy enough to fly. There was no word on the teen's medical condition and an autopsy is said to be scheduled for this week.
The flight had been scheduled to land in Atlanta at 4 p.m. local time on Saturday and Delta spokesman Michael Thomas stated that a relief crew took over the aircraft and flew the remaining passengers to Atlanta.