Spokane family sues Alaska Air after woman in wheelchair falls down escalator

SEATTLE -- The family of a 75-year-old woman who fell down an airport escalator in her motorized wheelchair and later died is suing Alaska Airlines, according to KXLY.

Bernice Kekona's family says Alaska promised she would be escorted from one gate to another at the airport in Portland, Oregon, in June.

The family says two employees of Huntleigh USA Corp., a contractor hired by Alaska, took Kekona off the plane and put her in her scooter-wheelchair but then abandoned her.

An Alaska spokeswoman said Friday that Kekona declined help and went off on her own.

Kekona became lost and fell down the escalator, hitting her head. She died of her injuries in September, according to the lawsuit filed this month in state court in Seattle.

Huntleigh didn't respond immediately to requests for comment.