United Airlines may have averted an ugly and potentially damaging legal battle when they reportedly reached an 'amicable' settlement for an undisclosed amount with Dr. David Dao, the passenger dragged off from his seat in the controversial UA flight. But it seems the embattled airlines' troubles are not over yet, this time with the still unfinished business of the giant bunny, Simon, who died on another UA flight. The breeder of giant rabbit Simon is seething mad after the airlines cremated the body of Simon without her consent.
Annette Edwards, 65, Simon's breeder, had called for a post-mortem or autopsy but found out that the ten-month-old's body had been burned on Friday. Edwards said the whole thing stinks of a cover-up. She had been asking United "over and over again" for Simon's body so that she can have him examined in Britain where she is, but United Airlines never got back to her.
Edwards emphasized that she only urgently wanted to know how the giant rabbit she bred died aboard the UA flight. She said Simon was very fit when he left her house but then 24 hours later, she would learn that he was dead. Edwards said that staff from the airlines finally called her late on Friday and informed her Simon had been cremated, and there was nothing they could do about it.
The 3-feet bunny froze to death last month after bungling ground staff at Chicago's O' Hare made the huge mistake of putting him in a chiller, which UA previously said was an "accident". Simon had been flown there from Heathrow and was supposed to be on his way to his new celebrity owner in Ohio.
Edwards said she suspected Simon had been dropped but she was really shocked to learn that the rabbit was frozen to death. She said that she had also asked for CCTV footage but the airlines would not give it to her, and she's clueless why they are refusing.
Edwards also have with her a copy of the pre-flight check from her local vet Jonathan Niccol certifying that he had examined Simon on April 19 and concluded that he was in "good physical condition and fit to travel". Simon was the son of Darius, the world's biggest rabbit, and Simon was poised to inherit the title.
United Airlines said they were talking to Edwards with a "desire to make this right". They also said they are also "saddened" by Simon's death and have worked with
Edwards to reach a "satisfactory resolution".
It is not yet apparent, though, that the two parties have arrived at a conclusive agreement on the matter, with Edwards still smarting not just for the death of the rabbit she bred and took care of, but with his body being ordered cremated by UA without her consent, and with the cause of the animal's death still in question.