World’s longest-serving flight attendant dies aged 88: ‘Fly high, Bette’ | Airline industry

Bette Nash, recognized as the world’s longest-serving flight attendant, has passed away at the age of 88 after nearly 67 years of service in the skies. Nash commenced her flying career with the now-defunct Eastern Airlines in 1957, primarily working the shuttle route between Washington DC and Boston so she could be home every night to care for her son, ABC reported. It was the allure and charm of aviation that initially drew Nash to the profession. “I aspired to become a flight attendant from the moment I boarded my first plane – I was 16 years old,” she mentioned to CNN. “The captain and the flight attendant walked across the corridor and I thought, ‘Oh my goodness,’ and I said that’s my calling.” At the outset of her profession, “you had to meet certain height and weight criteria; it used to be dreadful,” she conveyed to WJLA. “If you gained a few pounds, you had to continuously monitor your weight, and if you didn’t comply, they would remove you from the payroll!” In 2022, Nash was recognized with the Guinness World Record for being the longest-serving flight attendant. She never officially retired from her position with American Airlines and passed away on 17 May in hospice care following a recent breast cancer diagnosis, according to ABC. “We are deeply saddened by the passing of Bette Nash, who spent nearly seven decades warmly attending to our passengers in the air,” American Airlines expressed in a social media statement. “She began her service in 1957 and held the Guinness World Record for the longest-serving flight attendant. Bette motivated generations of flight attendants. Soar high, Bette.” Nash “impacted many with her kindness, commitment, and service,” the Association of Professional Flight Attendants (APFA), the union representing American Airlines flight attendants, stated in their commentary. “Rest in peace, Bette. You will not be forgotten.”

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