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Man deploys evacuation slide on Crown Candy Kitchen owner’s flight

ST. LOUIS – Crown Candy owner Andy Karandzieff hasn’t had the best vacation week in Cancun.

First, his business lost electricity over the weekend, which damaged equipment. That prompted him to tweet that he could possibly move Crown Candy to St. Louis County.

On his return flight home Tuesday morning, a man tried to break out of the Frontier Airlines plane as it was getting ready to take off.

“We were in front row and a gentleman behind us started throwing up,” Karandzieff said.

Karandzieff said the man walked past him and his wife and began banging and kicking on the cockpit door. Flight attendants calmed the man down and sat him next to Karandzieff’s wife. But that's when, according to Karandzieff, the man lost it.

“He kind of jumped up like he was heading to the bathroom again but all of a sudden he made a left turn and went for the exit door,” Karandzieff said. “He did manage to get the door open after a little scuffle and within seconds, four or five guys came out of nowhere and subdued him.”

Law enforcement got the man off the plane. Unfortunately, the slide was out and the door opened, so the flight had to be canceled.

Karandzieff said not only was the man disoriented, but he was also a large individual.

“If he would have opened door in-air, who knows what would have happened,” he said.

Karandzieff credited Frontier Airlines for handling everything perfectly, including getting passengers to a good hotel and a plane back to St. Louis on the same day.

As for his business, Karandzieff said he’s hopeful Ameren Missouri will be able to work out the continuing electricity problems at Crown Candy.

“We're not moving anywhere; that would be last resort. We belong on that corner,” Karandzieff said. “I got a feeling things will get better.”