Too fat to fly? Stranded Frenchman’s long ordeal

Associated Press


He’s been turned down by planes, trains and even a cruise ship in his quest to return home — and his family says it’s because he has been deemed too fat to travel. Now Frenchman Kevin Chenais’ long and fitful journey is coming to an end.

Chenais, 22, who weighs 500 pounds, says he has been repeatedly refused transport over the past two weeks as he sought to get home to France from the United States. P&O Ferries finally offered to take him in an ambulance across the English Channel on Wednesday, the final hurdle keeping him from his home.

The odyssey began when British Airways refused to honor his return ticket from the U.S., where he spent months receiving medical care for a hormone imbalance.

BA acknowledges that it refused to let Chenais board the plane, but said confidentiality rules prevent it from saying why.

Chenais said Carnival Cruises also rejected his request for a cabin on a trans-Atlantic voyage.

Virgin Atlantic airlines stepped in to fly him to London, he said. From London, Chenais had planned to take the Eurostar train home. But Eurostar refused to allow him on board because of safety rules.

The ferry company took Chenais and his family across the English Channel late Wednesday to Calais. From there, the family was driving to Ferney-Voltaire, 460 miles away.

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