United Airlines has been all over the news this week, but one dog mom is forever grateful for a particular employee who eased her worries as her family took a flight overseas.
Ashley Cervantes, a military wife, was traveling from Texas to Hawaii because her husband was being relocated. They refused to take the trip without their beloved Boxer, Maya. The pup is too big to be allowed a ticket with the passengers on the airplane, so there was only one thing to do: board her on the flight in cargo.
“As a woman married to a man in the military, I spend a lot of time away from family and friends, and occasionally my husband,” Cervantes explained to iHeartDogs. “Maya is always there to keep me laughing with her goofy personality. She’s my little sidekick.”
As many pet parents know, having their companions fly in cargo can be a worrying experience. That’s why Cervantes was understandably concerned about her pup.
On a Facebook post that went viral, she wrote:
“I’ve been a hot mess since we flew out of Dallas this morning. Every little bump or turn in the aircraft I pictured my baby Maya girl and her scared face.”
Amidst her anxiety, Cervantes had taped a note to Maya’s kennel to describe the pup’s shy but sweet nature. She also added her phone number, desperately hoping that one of the airline employees might send her a text, saying everything was alright.
“I knew it was a long shot, and honestly I was not expecting a text from anyone,” she wrote on the post. “And then to my surprise, I got a text from a complete stranger updating me on Maya.”
They were on a layover in the Denver airport when the dog mom received a heartfelt note from Maya’s point of view — along with a photo of the pooch with the employee — bringing “happy tears” to her eyes.
“I can’t even describe the amount of stress that has just been lifted from me, all because of his kindness. Thank you sir for treating my family as your family! ” she wrote.
When Cervantes shared the heartwarming story on the Love What Matters Facebook page, it got shared thousands of times!
In comments on the post thread, Cervantes explained that she’d love for this airline worker to get recognition, and even contacted his supervisors to tell them about his amazing work.
As for Maya? She arrived at the destination airport in Hawaii safe and sound with her humans!
“She’s settling into Hawaii really well! I’d have to say, her favorite part of living on the island so far is feeling the sand on her feet!” Cervantes told iHeartDogs.
Check out Maya’s “Sand Dance” !
We are so glad that all the Cervantes made it through their trip safe and sound and hope that they enjoy their new home!
Special thanks to Ashley Cervantes for lending us these adorable pictures!