- Two years ago, Dr. David Dao made headlines when he was dragged off a United Airlines flight in Chicago. He suffered a concussion and other injuries in the process.
- In his first interview since the incident, Dao said he’s not angry at the officers or the airline: “They had a job to do,” he told ABC’s “Good Morning America.”
- “The most important thing is that accident turned out in a positive way,” he said.
It’s been two years since Dr. David Dao, a pulmonologist from Vietnam, was the subject of an internationally infamous viral video.
United Airlines eventually settled with Dao for an undisclosed sum after the incident sparked outcry from consumers around the world and even reached as high as the federal government.Daniel Elwell, the Federal Aviation Administration’s acting administrator, also poked fun at the settlement.
On Tuesday, the second anniversary of the doctor’s forced removal from United Flight 3411 by Chicago air-safety officers, Dao gave his first interview about what happened that spring day with ABC’s “Good Morning America.”
He doesn’t remember much of the incident after he hit his head on the plane’s bulkhead and suffered a concussion, he told the morning show. But after watching the video of the incident, he said, “I just cried.”
“I had to hide,” Dao said of his unwanted fame. “I stayed for months and months in the house.”
The two officers who dragged Dao by his limbs down the plane’s aisle as alarmed passengers looked on were eventually fired from the Chicago Department of Aviation, but Dao said he isn’t angry with them.
“They have a job to do,” Dao said. “If they don’t do it they might lose their job, so I’m not angry with them.”
No United Airlines employees were fired because of the incident, though the company did eventually change its policies for crew booking and compensated all passengers on the flight.
In a statement to ABC, the airline said, “Flight 3411 was a defining moment for United Airlines and it is our responsibility to make sure we as a company … continue to learn from that experience.”
Dao, for his part, is glad the situation eventually led to change at United.
“The most important thing is that accident turned out in a positive way,” he said.
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.