For Jordan, the marriage with Southwest “is like marching with my daughter on her wedding day down the aisle…. This was my baby.”
A year and a half after the deal closed, the combination of the two carriers’ operations is still in progress, and the AirTran name is expected to remain in some form into 2015. AirTran still had roughly 170 flights a day from Atlanta this fall, while Southwest had about 20 daily flights.
Next year, Southwest plans to connect AirTran’s route network with its own. Southwest has cut some AirTran routes as it gradually dismantles the AirTran hub in Atlanta to decrease the focus on connecting passengers.
Jordan, meanwhile, has started an organization called GratitudeAmerica, focusing on community resources for veterans.
He said it’s “highly unlikely” he’ll rejoin the airline industry, but added, “I can’t walk around without looking up to see if there’s an airplane up in the air.”