JetBlue CEO Says Captain Who Had A Meltdown Was A 'Consummate Professional'

Yesterday a JetBlue captain had to be subdued after having a mid-air breakdown on a flight from New York to Las Vegas

The captain, identified as 49-year-old Clayton Osbon, was a 12-year veteran pilot described by JetBlue’s CEO and president Dave Barger as a “consummate professional” in an interview with NBC’s Matt Lauer on the TODAY show.  

Barger told Lauer that he’s known Osbon personally for a long time and “there’s been no indication of this at all in the past.” 

On Tuesday, Flight 191 from JFK International airport had to make an emergency landing in Amarillo, Texas, citing a “medical situation,” according to an FAA report.  

Passengers aboard the diverted flight have told several news sources that the captain began displaying erratic behaviour after he was removed from the cockpit by the co-pilot and then locked out. The captain began banging on the cockpit door, screaming “let me in” and running up and down the aisle, according to CBSDFW.COM.

An off-duty pilot took over to make an emergency landing while the captain was tackled and restrained.  

Passenger Mark Sellouk told CBS News, “A couple of guys just took him down. We had to subdue the guy. About six of us came into the picture, we got him by his legs, we got him by his arms, by his face, by his head.”

The captain is now in the “hands of medical care” and “under the custody of the FBI,” Barger said.  

Watch the interview with Matt Lauer below:

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