Savannah Phillips, 32, started crying silently while she was sitting in her seat waiting for her flight to take off. because of the body-shaming words of the man next to her. Savannah looked over at him, and saw that he has texted someone that he was being forced to sit next to a “smelly fatty.”
“Before I knew it, I could feel hot, salty tears coming down my face,” Savannah Phillips wrote on Facebook. She said she was stuck there, crying because of the humiliation she couldn’t escape from.
It was then that another passenger, sitting in the row behind Savannah, stepped in and took action. He, too, had seen the words, and wasn’t ready to let the guy with the cellphone get away with it. He immediately intervened.
The man – named Chase Irwin – rose from his seat, took a step and tapped the offensive man on the shoulder. Savannah heard him say: “Hey- I need to talk to you.”
“I haven’t experienced body-shaming like that since I was in grade school,” Savannah said. The whole incident, however, took an unexpected turn when another passenger intervened to help her. It was a bar manager, Chase Irwin.
Irwin explained to both the bully and the flight attendant that he’d seen the other man sending hateful, hurtful text messages to the woman next to him and that they’d be switching seats. He rightfully called the mean old guy heartless. They made the switch and Irwin, explained that what he’d seen the bully saying made him totally irate.
“I told him thank you for what he did and that it meant the world to me, and that he would be my husband’s new favorite person. The flight attendant kept trying to give him free drinks and told him that he was her hero. He wasn’t her hero – he was mine,” the beautiful mom of two explained.
“I would also like to add that I do forgive him,” Savannah said. “I have said lots of things in my life that I shouldn’t have, just like everyone else. If I hated him, I would not be any different and it is vital to respond with love. Only love brings change in the world.”
Phillips said that neither she nor Chase have spoken with the man ever since. She doesn’t even know who he is. “And I really don’t want to know. I don’t want this story to be about him – my goal was for it to be about Chase and how we should all be brave like he was and stand up for others.”
The story has quickly gone viral since, after a television station picked up on Savannah’s Facebook story. Chase is now being celebrated widely as the hero he really is.
Be sure to share this act of kindness with the people you love!