Skip to main content

Behind the Wings: Second time’s a charm

In the 1970s, Piedmont Flight Attendant Carolyn “CeeCee” Carr dreamed of working as a flight attendant but was frustrated that she was overlooked for employment by several major airlines. At age 60, she decided once again to pursue her passion of becoming a flight attendant. Her passengers may know her as “Miss CeeCee from West Philly” but they may not know the obstacles she overcame to accomplish her goal and follow her dream.

CeeCee shares that growing up in the ’50s and ’60s was a challenging time for African Americans, but she was taught to always be kind and show respect to everyone regardless of their background. “You never know what someone’s story is, or what passengers are dealing with when they board my plane,” says CeeCee. “It costs nothing to be kind and chances are if you provide good service and show kindness, you will see them again.” And she does. She has been stopped many times in the airport by former passengers who want to say hello or have a conversation. “It makes me feel good to know they remember my name and reach out when they see me.”

CeeCee attended Temple University with aspirations to become a teacher. While in school, she had an opportunity to participate in a study abroad summer program in Nigeria. She graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Education and began her career teaching. Over the years, CeeCee taught in Atlanta, Georgia and Michigan while caring part-time for her ill mother. She also tutored students and later worked in a nursing home. “I had always felt a calling to help people,” recalls CeeCee. “Whatever job I was doing, I wanted to make someone’s day better by helping them.”

When she turned 60, she reignited her original desire to become a flight attendant. “I didn’t tell anyone of my pursuit at first because I didn’t want to be discouraged and told I was too old,” shares CeeCee. She reached out to a counselor at a local job resource center who helped her prepare a resume. The counselor referred CeeCee to Piedmont Airlines, sent her resume and CeeCee received an invitation to attend a group interview.

At the interview, CeeCee recalls being asked why she would make a good flight attendant. “I told them my mother told me that I’d never meet a stranger and that was how I was taught to treat people,” CeeCee shares. The next day she was offered the job and joined Piedmont in August of 2016.

According to CeeCee, being a flight attendant was everything she dreamed it would be and more. “I was thrilled that Piedmont took a chance on me at my age and believed in me,” CeeCee shares fondly. “Sometimes people believe in you more than you believe in yourself. The trainers were patient with me while I learned the ropes and they displayed genuine kindness. My success in this role has truly been a group effort.”

Not only do former passengers reach out to her directly when they see her in the airport, but the company receives countless tweets about her customer service on social media. She remains humble and says she just comes to work every day to take care of her passengers while they are on her plane. The recognition isn’t what drives her, it is feeling that at the end of the day, she gave 100% to help people along their journey. Although she shares that it is an unbelievable feeling when a customer tells her she is one of the best flight attendants they have ever had.

Growing up, CeeCee says she was expected to do her best at whatever job she was doing but being a flight attendant took that to a higher level of understanding. As a flight attendant, not only could she make a difference in the lives of others but also make it a career.

In her spare time, CeeCee continues her passion for helping others by assisting at her niece’s daycare, helping her senior friends with grocery shopping and taking them to doctor visits. Reflecting on her days as a church pianist and singer in a rock-n-roll band, CeeCee enjoys singing and playing the piano when she sees one in her travels. She also has a goal to feed all the hungry cats in West Philly.

She is asked often by passengers about her job as a flight attendant. “I tell them it isn’t for everyone, but I had a passion and I went after it,” CeeCee shares proudly. “I tell them life is short and whatever their passion is, they should pursue it. I’m 66 years old living my dream with the help of my faith, friends, family, my cat, Cinnamon and my coworkers.”

Interested in working for an airline with top notch team members who live out our mission and vision every day? Click here to view our current openings.

Behind the Wings is a Piedmont feature that highlights the accomplishments of the aviation professionals who make us Piedmont Proud inside and outside the airport. In honor of Black History Month, Piedmont is proud to recognize our team members and their contributions to the success of the airline and making a difference in their communities.