Greek citizen Antonis Mavropoulos missed the Nairobi-bound Ethiopian Airlines Boeing that crashed on Sunday morning by two minutes, it has transpired.
Mavropoulos would've been the 150th passenger on the plane that went down shortly after takeoff, killing everyone on board.
He explained on Facebook that after initially being angry about missing his flight, he now can't believe the outcome.
"They (police officers) led me to the police station of the airport. The officer told me not to protest but to pray to God because I was the only passenger that didn't board the ET 302 flight that was lost," Mavropoulos wrote in a Facebook post titled "My lucky day".
He also enclosed a picture of his boarding pass.
The Ethiopian Airlines flight ET302 crash caused the death of 157 people — 149 passengers and eight crew — from 30 countries. Among them, 19 were members of organizations affiliated with the UN.
A Lion Air flight using the same Boeing 737 Max 8 model crashed in Indonesia last October, killing 189 passengers. Two crashes in the space of five months has put the new type of Boeing aircraft under the spotlight.
Boeing did not respond to questions about the 737 MAX 8 on Sunday but said in a statement it would send a technical team to the crash location to provide assistance.
As it transpires, Mavropoulos was not the only person to miss the ill-fated flight. Ahmed Khalid, a passenger from Dubai, didn't make the connection after his initial flight was delayed.
Khalid told Canadian media Global News many passengers at Nairobi airport were waiting at the gate for information on flight ET302. He learned that the plane was missing from another traveller who checked the news on their phone.
Ethiopian Airlines has decided to "ground all B-737-8 MAX fleet" until further notice as a precautionary measure, it said in a statement on Twitter.