Mother and wife Savannah Phillips have two children. She adds that she is “not the biggest person on the airplane, but I’m not the smallest” when she is flying.
In a Facebook post, Phillips claimed that she makes an effort “to sit in a row where I don’t have to sit next to anyone” because she doesn’t want “someone being uncomfortable because they have to sit next to me.”
Phillips was unable to pick her seat on a flight to Chicago in 2018. Instead, she was given a seat when she arrived at the gate. She had a window seat, and the self-described comic sitting next to her got up when the plane took off so she could get to her seat. She caught him composing a really crude text about Phillips when he sat back down. He then pulled out his phone.
According to Phillips, the man seated next to her “took out his phone (with a large font and the screen brightness turned all the way up.). He started texting someone when his phone was about 12 inches away from her face, saying he was seated next to “a smelly fatty.” Turning to the window, Phillips began to cry.
The texts were seen by more than just Phillips. Chase Irwin, a fellow traveler seated nearby, read the text and observed Phillips’ response. He decided to save her at that point.
Someone behind us suddenly taps the guy’s shoulder and says, “Hey- I need to talk to you,” Phillips writes. The person sitting next to me removes his headphones.
We are exchanging seats, someone behind us announces. Now.’ ‘OK- why?’ the person sitting next to me questioned. And I overhear someone say, “You’re texting about her, and I’m not putting up with that” (cursing words removed).
Irwin and the comedian exchanged seats as Irwin tried to console Philips. He asked if I had read the texts, and I said I had. He assured me everything would be OK and advised me not to let that man get to me.
They discussed their families, children, and occupations for the remainder of the flight.
Because she wanted to spread awareness of Irwin’s generosity, Phillips posted the tale on Facebook. He was located on News Channel 5.