|FLIGHT PLAN: Yvonne Crum tries to take early shifts so she still has time for volunteer work.
photography by Hal Samples
In the world of Dallas bold-faced names, Yvonne Crum is one of the boldest: she has chaired luncheons, teas, and galas for dozens of organizations, and she has donated her time to charity since the ’70s. What most people don’t realize is she has also been a flight attendant for 43 years—and she still flies several times a month for American Airlines. “I’ve chaired a ball, raised thousands of dollars, and flown early the next morning,” Crum says.
Surprise, surprise: “Most people are surprised to see me. I think they just assume that I don’t work! They’ll grab another attendant and ask my name, or say, ‘You look so much like Yvonne Crum.’”
Uniform check: “I started out at Braniff, and we wore Pucci and Halston uniforms. We even had girdle checks! Now I wear navy slacks and a jacket I get tailored. Outside of work, I rarely select navy.”
Famous folks: “Oh, you name it. Andy Griffith, Pam Anderson and Tommy Lee, Richard Simmons. The best one is definitely Brad Pitt. We were flying from New York to Los Angeles, and he was in first class. Of course he is the cutest thing in the free world! He borrowed Shawshank Redemption from me to watch during the flight, and when he was finished, he walked all the way to the back of the plane to give it to me.”
Death on a plane: I haven’t had any near-death experiences, knock on wood. However, a man passed away on one of my flights—he had cancer and was very ill when he got on the plane. We just pulled a blanket over him and no one seemed to notice, thankfully.”