Reporting Jessica Kartalija
WASHINGTON (WJZ) — Police in Washington, D.C. continue to look into how an 83-year-old woman died just after arriving from a trip to Barbados. Her body was found Monday in a park near Reagan National Airport.
As Jessica Kartalija explains, her family wants to know why she was not escorted off the plane.
“We have not given up. We will find her, we will be with her and we will put our arms around her one more time,” said Kalisse and Alexandria Anderson.
The Andersons spoke just moments before the body of a female was found near the spot where their grandmother was last seen at Gravelly Point. Searchers scoured the area around Gravelly Point and Teddy Roosevelt Island.
The disappearance of 83-year-old Victoria Kong has been a mystery since Friday, when she got off of an American Airlines flight at 4 p.m. There was a photo of her leaving Reagan National Airport.
Kong’s body was found Monday, north of the airport, about 30 feet from a bike trail in a wooded area.
“She left the airport at 4:12 and the plane landed at 4 o’clock and it was like, how did she leave that quickly? Why wasn’t somebody there? Without her belongings, without her luggage, she went straight out the door and didn’t look back,” said the Andersons.
Her granddaughters were waiting for her to arrive by a wheelchair being pushed by an attendant, which they say they requested.
“They were aware that she did not know where she was going and needed to be directed everywhere in her wheelchair,” said the Andersons.
American Airlines issued a statement. “The well-being and safety of our customers is our top priority. In this case, American was asked to provide mobility assistance but we received no indication that Ms. Kong suffered from any form of cognitive disability. If we learn that a customer has a cognitive disability, our agents are trained to advise that we do not provide supervision of passengers and a companion is necessary to ensure safe travel.”
Kong’s granddaughters say she had been showing some early signs of dementia. The investigation into how she died is ongoing.
The medical examiner is working to determine Kong’s cause of death.