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Widow Says Southwest Airlines Left Husband To Die In Plane Bathroom During Flight From Oakland

OAKLAND (CBS SF) -- The widow of a high-profile financial analyst is filing a wrongful death lawsuit against Southwest Airlines, claiming a flight crew left her husband in an airplane bathroom when he desperately needed help, even treating him like an out-of-control passenger.

Richard Ilczyszyn had made a name for himself in the finance world running a successful brokerage firm, but perhaps his most important job was husband and father. "The last thing he said to me was 'I can't wait to get home to see you girls,'" wife Kelly Ilczyszyn said.

Last September, the 46-year-old was flying home from a business trip when he suffered a fatal pulmonary embolism, reports CBS News correspondent John Blackstone. Kelly believes he could have been saved.

"He should have been helped on the aircraft. If they just would have gotten help," she said.

His Southwest Airlines flight was preparing to land in Orange County, California, when flight attendants heard sounds from the rear restroom. According to the sheriff's report, a crew member pushed the door open slightly and saw him "slumped over," "groaning" and "crying."

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