Via Airlines stops flights at Pittsburgh International Airport | TribLIVE.com
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Tom Davidson

A Florida-based airline that started flying April 4 at Pittsburgh International Airport said Thursday it was ceasing operations there, effective immediately.

Via Airlines Vice President Don Bowman said the move was made because of challenges in finding qualified crew members and called it a “painful, but necessary decision.”

Those with confirmed and paid reservations will receive a full refund, Bowman said.

Via was welcomed to Pittsburgh with fanfare in January, when officials throughout the region touted the airline as a good match for the airport.

On April 4, Via started direct flights to Birmingham, Ala. and in the coming months it was to add flights to Memphis, Tenn., and Hartford, Conn. — mid-sized markets that hadn’t been served in Pittsburgh, according to Allegheny County Airport Authority CEO Christina Cassotis.

Via, based in Maitland, Fla., is a privately held company with 150 employees and 10 aircraft. It has a two-decade history and operates in 19 cities across the country. About 10 employees were based at the Pittsburgh airport.

Via will retain one route, from Orlando Sanford International to Jackson, Miss. plus charter flights throughout the US.

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