Jacksonville Marine stranded overnight in airport after Delta flight has mechanical problems

A missed connecting flight led to Delta telling a Marine to spend the night at an Atlanta airport.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Lance Cpl. Darrell Young joined the Marines for the right reasons: To protect his country and to be a better man, his mother, Geneva Young, said.

"He seen that just being here wasn't going anywhere, so he decided on his own. When he was in the 10th grade he began looking into being a Marine," Geneva Young said.

Young, 20, was home in Jacksonville last week on a 10-day break from Camp Pendleton in San Diego, Calif.

He was trying to fly back to the base Monday night when a pop-up Florida storm delayed his flight.

"As soon as the storm passed over, the engine malfunctioned," Geneva Young said. "They had mechanical trouble with the engine."

The multi-hour delay forced him to miss his connecting flight in Atlanta bound for San Diego, Calif. He was stuck for the night in the airport.

Darrell Young said Delta provided accommodations for other passengers on his delayed flight with their tickets cited a mechanical failure as the reason for the delay. However, for some reason, he said his ticket noted a weather delay.

Delta said he'd have to spend the night in the airport until he could be re-booked on a flight Tuesday morning.

“Delta is reviewing why its support for customers on Flight 2297 was not evenly applied," a spokesman told First Coast News via email Tuesday.

The airline is still not exactly sure what happened, but said it's possible no rooms were available. If that was the case, the airline representative said they're not obligated to provide accommodations.

"They took my son and just threw him to the wolves and that hurt," Geneva Young said.

First Coast News originally reached out to Delta over Twitter Monday night while Darrell Young was in the airport. The airport said the airline would work directly with Darrell Young, but did not provide a direct number for him to contact; it offered he speak to them via Twitter. It also advised he speak with an employee at the ticket counter.

However, Darrell Young said there weren't any employees at the ticket counter. He also sent photos of the empty airport.

Delta never provided a contact number for help.

They offered to talk with him via Twitter. He doesn't use an account.

"We will reach out directly to the impacted serviceman to offer an apology and compensation,” the airline's spokesman said Tuesday.   

"For them to treat, I mean anybody's child like that, is just horrible," Geneva Young said. "Especially men and women putting their lives on the line, you don't mistreat like that. Even if you couldn't make it happen, you should at least have given him somewhere to lay down and sleep."

© 2017 WTLV-TV


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