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United Passengers Defend Pair Being Fat Shamed by Seatmate: ‘You’re Disgusting’

Inside Edition logo Inside Edition 1/29/2019 Inside Edition Staff

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A woman fat shamed fellow passengers on a United Airlines flight earlier this month.

The incident happened before takeoff on a United flight from Las Vegas to Newark, New Jersey, on New Year's Day. 

Norma Rodgers, an oncology nurse, was seated on one side of the woman while her travel companion was on the other side. Rodgers filmed a video of their encounter.

“I'm stuck, but at least they'll keep me warm,” the woman is hear saying in the video.

Rodgers flagged down a flight attendant for assistance.

"Excuse me. Can you find her another seat? Because I will not be verbally abused by this b**** or anybody else,” Rodgers said.  

“I can't sit here because they're both so big. Left and right. I can't even sit here,” the woman responded. 

The flight attendant offered to help the woman find a new seat, but as the lady got up, she offered one more comment to Rodgers and her companion: “I eat salad.” 

"B****, kiss my fat a**, OK?” Rodgers replied. 

Other passengers were outraged, as one told the fat shamer, “You should be ashamed of yourself, ma'am. What you're doing is so terrible.”

“Well, I’m not politically correct!” the woman replied. 

Jonathan Fernandez, star of the VH1 reality show "Love & Hip Hop New York," was also on the flight and called the woman "disgusting."

The woman replied, “Why don't you sit in between those two big pigs?”

Fernandez spoke to Inside Edition. 

"I was appalled and I felt angry, because I am like, there are so many ways to go about this and I just hate that no one was kinda saying anything so I couldn’t hold it in, and was like, ‘You’re disgusting! You’re disgusting!’” he said. 

United removed the woman from the flight before takeoff, saying in a statement: “United flight attendants acted quickly to find a different seat for the disruptive customer. When it became clear that this passenger's behavior was likely to be problematic on this flight, she was provided alternate travel arrangements first thing the next morning.” 

If you find yourself next to an abusive seatmate, travel expert Laura Begley Bloom told Inside Edition, "don’t get involved, don’t start an altercation. It is going to be a no-win situation."

"The airlines will guarantee that they will get you to your location but they don’t guarantee the personal space you are going to have as you are flying. The best thing to do in a situation like this is ask the flight attendant if there is another seat on the plane," she added. 

a group of people taking a selfie: Fellow flyers on a United Airlines flight came to the defense of a pair who found themselves being openly fat shamed by their seatmate. © Provided by CBS Interactive Inc. Fellow flyers on a United Airlines flight came to the defense of a pair who found themselves being openly fat shamed by their seatmate.

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