It Took Up to 17 Police Officers to Toss a 33 Year Old Grandfather From a Plane

Ryanair flight FR1128 from Birmingham to Gran Canaria diverted to Santiago de Compostella in northwestern Spain on Monday.

Davi Stretton Mellor, his wife Kerry-Anne, along with their children and grandchildren were taken off the flight.

They got into a fight with other passengers. In their version other passengers “were banging on their children’s seats.” And nothing happened until Stretton Miller went to sleep and “was later woken by Spanish police who demanded he leave the plane.”

I find that explanation unlikely. However he also goes into greater details about the altercation in a separate interview, doubling down on the claim that other passengers were aggressors and they did nothing wrong.

‘We took our seats and within five minutes we had a problem with a group behind us. They were Polish people, a mixture of burly blokes and women, and the blokes were banging on the seats being noisy.

‘I turned around and asked them if they could be quiet. I was very pleasant and just said please can you stop banging on the seats. They replied by swearing at me.

‘I’m a family man and I was just trying to keep the peace on the plane but you can’t do that with a bunch of rowdy intoxicated blokes who have no respect for anyone else.’I went to the toilet and one of them followed me and asked why I was going to the air hostess? I said I wasn’t just to keep the noise down.

Then someone else behind them stood up and had a go at all of us.’

Copyright: trevorbenbrook / 123RF Stock Photo

That’s supposedly when things “calmed down” and he went to sleep only to be grabbed “by his collar and dragged him out of his seat” before being hauled off the plane.

Other passengers, though, disagree and claim they were aggressors.

  • One passenger says two police officers escorted the family off the plane, and that no one touched the man.

  • Mellor says he was taken off by 8 officers and also reported “around 17 police officers”. Like every good fish story the number keeps growing with each telling.

  • He says it’s discrimination because of “a tattoo on my face, a tribal tattoo.”

Kerry-Anne Millerchip with her husband Davi Stretton Mellor

At first only the 33 year old grandfather was removed and his wife and family were permitted to say on the plane, however she allegedly refused to return to her seat when the pilot instructed her to do so. Police were called back onto the aircraft and the whole family was booted at that point.

The family spent the night in a hostel “and the following day they had to catch four buses to get to A Coruña airport” 40 miles away where they caught a new flight “costing over £1,000” using a relative’s credit card. They also lost 500 euros and an iPad that were with them on the plane. They want Ryanair to reimburse them.

Mellor’s wife says they did nothing wrong “and wants CCTV footage” to prove they’re in the right. It’s always easy to call for footage that does not exist. There was a push after 9/11 to add video recording to planes but the plan was abandoned under pressure from unions representing flight crew.

Ultimately the plane continued on and arrived more than 3 hours late.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. A 33-year-old grandfather is, in itself, a sensational story. Baby at 16 who had baby at 16 (more or less).

  2. Sorry, but I’m more shocked that the guy is a grandfather at 33 than being kicked off the plane

  3. “There was a push after 9/11 to add video recording to planes but the plan was abandoned under pressure from unions representing flight crew.”

    Of course – they don’t want video evidence of how they treat passengers or how they fail to perform their duties and instead chat in the galley during the flight.

    PS – I propose that in addition to the Florida or Germany game, we now add “Ryanair or JetBlue” to the mix.

  4. i really thought “33” was a typo. i clicked the article to write an alert message to Gary.

  5. @Mark – worse. The grandkids of the 33yo are two and three. The math becomes even worse.

    Teach your children well, I guess. Aargh.

    Hopefully they’re kids from a much earlier marriage of hers.

  6. Substitute United Airlines for Ryan Air in this story and this is the future of air travel in the U.S. with new basic economy fares. More uncomfortable slimline seats crammed into each plane with no legroom and planes filled with Spirit and Allegiant customers. It’s going to be one fight after another. Soon flight attendants will be more like bouncers. Business travelers aren’t going to put up with this for long.

  7. I mean at 33 he is a grandfather. No wonder he can not control the kids. He is still a kid himself. Is there a go fund me account so we can send the family condoms? When the pope wanted them to have children he did not mean have the children to have children, this is not the dark ages where 16 is middle age and 30 is death.

  8. Having travelled a bit in Europe I find that young adults there take their beer drinking very serious and my take is that the victim eas just a victim, not the instigator.

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