Russell Miller, the 69-year-old who was physically assaulted by 'Delta Karen' Patricia Cornwall, said that the punch did not hurt because 'she hit like a girl'. Cornwall's video of yelling and assaulting the elderly passenger has gone viral on social media.
Miller, along with his wife Marjorie, were headed to spend Christmas with their son Tyler Gearhart and his wife Rebecca who live near Columbia, South Carolina. The elderly couple was on their last leg of journey when the incident took place on Delta Airlines flight from Tampa Bay to Atlanta on December 23.
Cornwall Triggered After Miller Denied Her Being Compared to Rosa Parks
The viral video, which has raked in over 9 million views, shows Cornwall engaging in a profanity laden argument with Miller before assaulting him physically. Recalling the incident while speaking to the Daily Mail, Miller said that Cornwall had walked to the back of the plane to use the restroom.
"When she came out, inflight service had started. The cart was going down the aisle giving out bottles of water and bags of pretzels. It was one seat in front of me. The woman came out of the bathroom, touched the flight attendant on the shoulder and said, "can you help me find my seat?"
After the flight attendant told her that she would help Cornwall after finishing the inflight service, Cornwall started arguing with her. Later she accused the flight attendant of treating her like Rosa Parks.
"I said then, "Rosa Parks? Rosa Parks, number one, lady you're not black. Number two, this is not Alabama. Number three, this is not the 1950s. And number four this is not a bus, it's an airplane," Miller said adding that it appeared to have triggered the Delta Karen further.
"She turned her anger to me and said, "Was I talking to you? Do you feel like you have the right to talk to me?' I said "ma'am, the flight attendant said she would help you as soon as she can, please sit down". Then she just started going off on me. Then I said, "Karen, please go to the back of the plane and sit down."
Miller Agrees to be Witness At Cornwall's Trial
Miller, a former pharmacy manager from Seminole, Florida, said that when his wife asked Cornwall why she was doing this at Christmas time, the woman replied, "I am the grinch and I am stealing Christmas".
Speaking about the physical assault, Miller said Cornwall punched and spat on his right cheek and scratched the left cheek.
"She was a woman and she didn't draw back very far so no, she hit like a girl and it didn't hurt me. The only thing that hurt was the cut on my face. I was surprised when she hit me, of course. I didn't expect that. I thought it was just words and then she took it to be more than words. So my wife had not seen my face, I turned my face back towards my wife. I had blood running down my face from the scratch," said Miller. He also revealed about agreeing to be a witness at a trial in Atlanta after a request from FBI.