American Airlines Set To Recognise Long Serving Staff

American Airlines is set to honor some of their longest-serving staff members. In a press release, the Texas-based carrier announced a special celebration for staff who have served the airline for at least 45 years. For pilots, this threshold is reduced to 35 years due to the mandatory pilot retirement age. Those who are being honored have come not just from American’s workforce, but also those of airlines which American merged with.

American Airlines 777
American Airlines is recognizing its long-serving staff. Photo: Tom Boon – Simple Flying

American celebrates longest-serving staff members

Over 400 of American’s staff qualified for these honors. The team members congregated in Dallas for a black-tie dinner and recognition ceremony. Although, the occasion did offer some light relief as attendees were able to dance and reminisce a little. Moreover, for entertainment, American Airlines brought in Martha Reeves of Motown. In honoring these staff members, American Airlines Chairman and CEO Doug Parker had the following to say:

You have built this airline to what it is today. We stand on your shoulders, and we all will continue the legacy you have created

With over 130,000 staff around the globe, these long-serving staff members make up a significant chunk of the airline’s employee base. Some work as pilots, others flight attendants, and even some in airline operations.

American Airlines Staff
American Airlines is honoring 400 of their longest-serving staff members. Photo: American Airlines

What is the history of these staff members?

American highlights that these employees come from 11 different heritage carriers that are now part of American. These include:

  • Air Cal
  • Allegheny Airlines
  • Eastern Air Lines
  • Empire Airlines
  • Mohawk Airlines
  • Ozark Airlines
  • Piedmont Airlines
  • Pacific Southwest Airlines (PSA)
  • Trans World Airlines (TWA)
  • US Airways (or USAir)
American team members
Not all of American’s honorees this year have been with the airline for their entire career. Photo: American Airlines

American Airlines’ Stand Up to Cancer Drive

These scenes of jubilation come after American inaugurated flights on their Stand Up to Cancer Airbus A321. After American raised money for cancer research, they painted the names of those who either were or are afflicted with cancer on the plane. Several of those names are of some of American’s own employees.

Closeup Stand Up to Cancer Plane
The Stand Up to Cancer Plane bears the names of thousands of people affected by cancer. Photo: American Airlines

Maintenance contracts

Meanwhile, American Airlines is having an issue with their maintenance workers. After the merger with US Airways, both sets of maintenance workers did not come together under one contract. Now, American Airlines is locked in heated negotiations with these employees. Recently, an American mechanic was found to be intentionally tampering with an aircraft. Since this incident, the investigation has revealed some startling information.

American maintenance
American Airlines is dealing with issues over a maintenance contract. Photo: American Airlines

Last month, a judge ruled in favor of American Airlines and granted an injunction against the mechanics. According to American, these mechanics intentionally disrupted operations. Although the workers argued that they were simply doing their jobs, it seems that the judge was unimpressed.


It is pleasant to see an airline honor their long-serving employees. As these employees have dedicated much of their life to the airline, it is only fair for them to receive the acknowledgment they deserve. Hopefully, this event was a memorable one for all who attended.

Are you one of American Airlines’s longest-serving staff members? What was the celebration like? Let us know in the comments!