The 60 Minutes interview: Southwest's Herb Kelleher

In 1989, Steve Kroft profiled Herb Kelleher, the co-founder of Southwest Airlines, and his innovative no-frills approach to the airline business

CBS All Access
This video is available on CBS All Access

Herb Kelleher, who changed the airline industry by helping create and lead Southwest Airlines, a low-fare carrier that made air travel more accessible to the masses, has died. He was 87.

Southwest confirmed that Kelleher died on Thursday.

"Herb was a pioneer, a maverick, and an innovator. His vision revolutionized commercial aviation and democratized the skies," Southwest said in a statement.

Kelleher was a lawyer in San Antonio when a client came to him in the late 1960s with the idea for a low-fare airline that would fly between big cities in Texas. Today, Southwest carries more passengers within the U.S. than any airline.

At a time when many other airlines were run by colorless finance wizards, Kelleher boasted about drinking whiskey and showed a gift for wacky marketing ploys.

ot-herbkellehersouthwesta.jpg