Fallen Soldier Carts Made by Alaska Airlines, Available to Other Airlines

May 26, 2024
Most of the work on the carts is done by volunteers who work in the aircraft maintenance group in Seattle, Washington.

This article is part of Ground Support Worldwide’s “Handling with Compassion” series, which looks at the respectful transportation of human remains, including military human remains.

When a hearse is not part of a military human remains (MHR) transfer on the airfield, Alaska Airlines uses a Fallen Soldier Cart.

A total of 15 stations served by Alaska Airlines and Horizon Airlines are equipped with Fallen Soldier Carts owned and operated by Alaska Airlines.

When Alaska team members deliver a cart, Kevin Kruse, an Alaska Airlines technician on-the-job-training instructor and Fallen Soldier Program founder and volunteer, says, “We make it known that it is available for any other airline to use.”

A 16th cart is being delivered to Nashville at the end of June.

“We have been trying to deliver two a year, this year we will only do one,” says Kruse.

Putting a number on how many carts are needed is difficult, he explains, because the airline has been growing and adding stations.

“The carts are the same as the day-to-day carts you see on the ramp,” he says, noting however that Fallen Soldier Carts are not used in regular service.

Painted navy blue and decorated in a dignified manner, Kruse says they are used only to transport MHR.

When the Fallen Soldier Carts are not being used, he says they are stored and covered to stay clean and ready for service.

About the Author

Rebecca Kanable | Assistant Editor

Rebecca Kanable, a veteran journalist, joined Endeavor Business Media's aviation group in 2021. She has worked for various publications, including trade magazines and newspapers.

Contact: Rebecca (Becky) Kanable

Assistant Editor of Airport Business, AMT, Ground Support Worldwide 

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