When it comes to the love one man has for his daughter, the sky’s the limit.
Pierce Vaughan, a flight attendant for Delta Airlines, had to work on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. So her father, Hal Vaughan, used his airline benefits to snag tickets on the flights she was working to spend the holiday with her zipping across the country.
The adorable duo’s story went viral on Monday, after Mike Levy, a passenger who sat next to Hal Vaughan on a flight from Fort Myers, Florida, to Detroit, posted about it on Facebook.
Levy told HuffPost that his seatmate’s travel plans came up casually in conversation as the two were discussing where they were headed. “I thought it was so amazing for a father to do that for his daughter on Christmas,” Levy said.
According to Atlanta’s WXIA, Hal Vaughan scored six tickets and flew from New Orleans to Detroit, to Fort Myers, back to Detroit, then to Hartford, Atlanta and Denver.
Pierce Vaughan told the news station that this was her dad’s first time flying on any of her flights. He broke his neck shortly after she graduated from flight attendant school. (He was the one who pinned her wings on her uniform.)
When she found out she had to work this holiday season, the family came up with the plan for her now recovered dad to fly free on standby.
“I’d just never been without my parents on Christmas, so my mom took one for the team and stayed home with all of the pets so he could take his first trip since the accident with me,” Pierce Vaughan said.
On Christmas Day, Pierce Vaughn shared Levy’s photos on Facebook and added a few details about her dad’s flights.
“Dad’s first trip using his benefits was a success!” she wrote on Facebook. “A special thanks to all of the patient, wonderful gate agents around the country and my perfect crew. He made it on every flight and even got first class RSW-DTW (Christmas miracle).”
She also included a sweet shout-out to Levy for “being a great first class passenger & helping us to understand how cool this actually is!”
Delta Airlines released a statement, obtained by NBC Chicago, that said, “We appreciate all of our employees for working during the holidays to serve Delta customers, and love seeing this awesome Dad having the chance to spend Christmas with his daughter — even while crisscrossing the country at 30,000 feet.”
Even after all the attention for his post, Levy is still in awe about how he stumbled upon a real-life holiday tale.
“It’s just an amazing Christmas story about a father and his daughter,” he said. “I was happy to share the experience.”
Pierce Vaughan and Hal Vaughan did not immediately respond to requests for comment.