A flight attendant rescued a girl from human trafficking after she spotted the disheveled teen sitting on a plane and left a note for her in the restroom.
Shelia Fedrick, 49, was working on an Alaska Airlines flight from Seattle to San Francisco when she noticed a teen, believed to be 14 or 15 years old, sitting in the window seat next to a well-dressed older man, NBC reported.
Fedrick said the victim had greasy blond hair and looked like she ‘had been through pure hell’. It was the contrast between the two that raised a red flag.
When Fedrick would speak to the two passengers the girl would not look or talk and only the man would respond, she said.
The perpetrator would allegedly become defensive when the stewardess tried to make conversation.
The Alabama woman eventually relayed a message to the girl to go to the bathroom where she had left her a note on the mirror.
‘She wrote on the note she needed help,’ Fedrick said.
Shelia immediately told the pilot about the situation, who contacted the police.
Officers were waiting for the man at the terminal when the plane landed and arrested him.
‘I’ve been a flight attendant for 10 years and it’s like I am going all the way back to when I was in training and I was like I could have seen these young girls and young boys and didn’t even know,’ she told WTSP.
Fedrick said she has kept in contact with the girl she rescued over the past few years, who is now attending college.
Flight attendants now have tips on how to spot human trafficking as part of their training, reported airlineamb.org.
Former airline stewardess and founder of Airline Ambassadors, Nancy Rivard is hoping to incorporate Shelia’s instincts into the jobs of staff.
A group of about 100 flight attendants flew to Houston to learn how to spot the signs of human-trafficking situations.
The seminar trained them to look for signs that Fedrick found, such as disheveled passengers, people who insist on speaking for the victim, or if they appear to be drugged.
In an online Star Now Profile Fedrick says: ‘I love to smile, like being around people, that’s why I’m a flight attendant. Loving working with people and taking risk.’
The actress and model says she has worked as an extra on HBO and Lifetime shows and appeared in Ebony Magazine.
She adds that she is ‘willing to put in hard work’.