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Published on Friday, May 17, 2019

Dead man lay undiscovered in Cathay Pacific lounge for 17 hours

A Cathay Pacific customer traveling to Hong Kong collapsed and died in the airline's business lounge in San Francisco but wasn't discovered until 17 hours later.

Renowned scholar Ming Kou Chan, 69,  was en route to Hong Kong last October and was seen on security video inside the Cathay Pacific first class lounge at San Francisco Airport.

Footage showed him entering the bathroom but he never re-emerged.

He was eventually found unresponsive 17 hours and 20 minutes later, according to the recently released coroner's report.

He was pronounced dead at the scene. 

San Mateo County coroner said Chan had clogged arteries in his heart.

It is unclear why the airline did not conduct a search after Chan failed to board the flight and it has not explained why he laid there undiscovered for so long.

"Out of respect for the parties involved, we will not be commenting on the specifics of the incident," a Cathay statement said.

SFO spokesperson Doug Yakel said Cathay Pacific is directly responsible for all operations including safety and security at the lounge

"From the airport's perspective we typically leave it up to the airlines to manage the situation whenever passengers don't actually board the flight," Malcolm Yeung of the airport commission added.

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