A former flight attendant for China Airlines has come forward with new details about the Taiwanese woman who gave birth on a plane en route to Los Angeles from Taipei.
The ex-attendant, Lucienne Chen, said the media painted the event as a heartwarming story, but the “miracle at 30,000 feet” was really, at least from Chen’s perspective, a tale of a deceitful woman who inconvenienced an entire plane and put her life as well as her child’s life in jeopardy to get American citizenship.
According to Shanghaiist, Chen, who was not on the flight, received information from the flight staff, who were her former colleagues. She said that the woman was 36 weeks pregnant, which was illegal according to Taiwanese aviation regulations that mandate a doctor’s document that certifies if a woman is fit to fly beyond 32 weeks.
Dr. Angelica Zen was the physician on board who came forward to help with the delivery. She told news outlets that the airline attendants said “[the emergency] was just a lady having some abdominal pain.” She explained:
“But when I saw her she was, like, very pregnant.”
Chen said that when the airline staff was preparing the woman for delivery, she kept asking:
“Are we in US airspace yet?”
Chen was furious with the in-flight incident and directed her anger at the woman via a Facebook post that read:
“Not only did you take the lives of both yourself and your child as a joke, you also took the schedules of a plane-full of people as a joke — all because of your child’s American passport!
“An entire plane had to be diverted, causing scheduling problems for all the other innocent passengers. The crew also had to stay for the night in Alaska. Do you know the true social cost of your actions?”
The plane landed at its original destination, Los Angeles, three hours behind schedule after it was diverted to Anchorage, Alaska, for an emergency landing. The woman, surnamed Jian, received immediate medical attention when they landed on American soil. However, U.S. immigration authorities deported Jian back to Taiwan soon after Jian and her newborn daughter were declared stable, the China Post reported.
When Jian arrived back in her native land, she was ambushed by media who pressed her with questions surrounding her separation from her newborn child.
Although she refused to comment to the press when she landed, she told the Taiwanese aviation authorities that her daughter had been given U.S. citizenship by the immigration department. However, Taiwanese officials did not confirm her claim as they are still reportedly waiting to hear back from U.S. immigration.