David Dao’s daughter, Crystal Dao Pepper, told the news conference in Chicago they are “sickened” by his treatment.
Video of the incident has been watched millions of times online.
Law enforcement officials dragged Dr. David Dao off Sunday evening’s Chicago to Louisville, Kentucky, flight because it was fully booked, and the airline wanted four passengers to make way for staff members.
The man had refused to leave, saying he needed to go home to see his patients.
Lawyer Thomas Demetrio told journalists on April 13: “He [Dr. David Dao] said that he left Vietnam in 1975 when Saigon fell and he was on a boat and he said he was terrified.
“He said that being dragged down the aisle was more horrifying and harrowing than what he experienced when leaving Vietnam.”
Crystal Dao Pepper, who lives in suburban Chicago, said: “What happened to my dad should have never happened to any human being, regardless of the circumstance.
“We were horrified and shocked and sickened to learn what happened to him and to see what happened to him.”
Image source Twitter
Dr. David Dao’s lawyers have filed an emergency court request for the airline to preserve evidence ahead of a hearing on April 17.
The filing with an Illinois state court demands that United Airlines and the city of Chicago preserve all surveillance videos, cockpit voice recordings, passenger and crew lists related to the flight.
The airline said it would refund the ticket costs of all passengers on April 9 flight.
Dr. David Dao was released on April 12 from a Chicago hospital, his lawyer said, adding that he planned to have reconstructive surgery.
Thomas Demetrio, and a second lawyer for David Dao, said that neither they nor the Dao family had heard from United Airlines yet.
“For a long time airlines, United in particular, have bullied us,” Thomas Demetrio told the press conference.
“We want respect and we want dignity, that’s it! Not a big deal.”
The lawyer said he did not believe Dr. Dao’s race played a factor, despite an email he had received suggesting he was “the modern day, Asian Rosa Parks”, a reference to the civil rights activist who refused to give up her seat on an Alabama bus in 1955.
Thomas Demetrio also said the family had not heard from United yet.
However, United said in a statement that its chief executive, Oscar Munoz, and the company had “called Dr. Dao on numerous occasions to express our heartfelt and deepest apologies”.
The airline did not comment on the potential litigation.