More than 2 million people have watched the original video of Susan Peirez berating a flight attendant named Tabitha on a February 6 flight from New York to Syracuse for being seated next to a baby.
In the video, Peirez is heard saying, "I'm not sitting by a crying baby." That, surely, is a feeling we can all empathize with. But with what happened next, not so much.
As the altercation develops between Peirez and the flight attendant, the 53-year-old Great Neck resident is also heard citing her employment ties to New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and threatening the Delta employee with "you may not have a job tomorrow."
The flight attendant, unfazed, responds, "I want this lady off the plane… she was screaming at the baby."
"I'm not screaming. I'll be quiet now, please. Hey, I'm sorry, I was really stressed out," Peirez responded, trying to walk back her threats. The unruly passenger was nonetheless removed from the plane.
The footage was captured by 19-year-old Marissa Rundell, the baby's mother, who was traveling to her home in upstate New York.
Rundell posted the video on Facebook so that her family could see Peirez's inappropriate behavior.
"This lady thought she was going to be rude to me and Mason," Rundell wrote on Facebook, posting a 45-second-long video. "Thank you to the lovely Delta flight attendant for not letting this woman bully us. Karma is a b****."
Rundell told Inc.com she rarely posts on Facebook. "This was a one-time thing and it happened…. I totally was caught off guard with everyone who has been watching it. I didn't even realize that many people could see what I was posting. I kind of feel bad for this lady. I don't know her story, she doesn't know mine. It might have been a misunderstanding."
In a recent statement, Ronni Reich, director of public information for the Arts Council where Peirez works, said, "State employees are and must be held to the highest standard both professionally and personally. This employee has been removed from office and placed on leave until further notice and until the inquiry is resolved."
Delta also supported its flight attendant is a recent statement.
"We ask that customers embrace civility and respect one another when flying Delta," the airline said. "This customer's behavior toward a fellow customer on a flight from New York to Syracuse was not in keeping with those standards. We appreciate our Endeavor Air flight attendant's commitment to Delta's core values and apologize to the other customers on board Flight 4017 who experienced the disturbance."