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Love, flights in air at RDU on Valentine's Day

Posted February 14

— Snow was on the ground but love was in the air Friday at Raleigh-Durham International Airport.

One day after more than three-quarters of the 400 daily flights into and out of RDU were canceled, airport operations returned to normal. Only about 20 morning flights were grounded Friday, and many people gathered at RDU bearing bouquets, waiting to see if their significant others would arrive to celebrate Valentine's Day.

Carlos Rodriguez said his girlfriend was supposed to fly to Raleigh Thursday, but her flight was canceled. He said the delay made their reunion a little sweeter.

Other couples embraced as they greeted at the airport after a hectic few days of travel.

"I was stuck in Minnesota and had to spend the night," Jim Burris said.

Randy Dekie said he had two or three flights cancel on him before he finally got on a Friday morning flight to RDU. The ordeal cost him $1,000, but his airline showed him a little love.

"They refunded the $1,000 because it was Valentine's Day," he said.

Dekie and his girlfriend, Kim Nicoll, travel every weekend to see each other. She said she's glad he was able to get to Raleigh so their dinner reservations can be salvaged.

"Who is going to pay for dinner if I'm not there? That's the big thing," he joked.

RDU officials said they expect flight delays to continue Saturday and possibly Sunday as winter weather continues to plague the Northeast.

The airport also canceled a planned open house for its renovated Terminal 1. The event hasn't been rescheduled.

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