By MARA LEE firstname.lastname@example.org
The Hartford Courant
4:59 PM EST, December 27, 2012
Hundreds of mourners who attended funerals of the Newtown victims flew for free to New York and Connecticut, and some of those mourners were chauffeured from the airport to Newtown by Connecticut state troopers.
Mary Ellen Jones, chairwoman of the Connecticut Airport Authority, said that as late as Sunday, "there was a family flying home from JFK that the troopers helped with."
Lt. Paul Vance said he had no idea how many trips the troopers made ferrying family members and friends to airports in the region.
American Airlines used donated miles through the Kids in Need program, as well as its own resources, for the more than 70 flights it gifted to mourners. The Kids in Need charity has flown nearly 300 children and their parents or guardians to hospitals for treatment.
American Airlines brought some people from England, as well as from across the United States, and the mourners flew into the New York airports, Bradley International Airport and White Plains all through last week. The last one went home on Saturday, an American spokeswoman said.
JetBlue brought a couple dozen mourners to Connecticut for free, spokeswoman Allison Steinberg said. Jones said JetBlue passengers included people from California.
"Delta worked directly and privately with immediate family members to provide complimentary transportation to or from Connecticut when possible," said spokesman Paul Skrbec. He said more than two dozen were given free flights, but declined to say exactly how many.
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