DENVER, DEC. 18 -- A senior flight attendant has been suspended for walking off an early-morning flight with three other attendants who complained to the captain that the jet should be de-iced, Eastern Airlines officials say.

The attendants reboarded an hour later, after the captain had the jet de-iced, officials said.

The Atlanta-bound Boeing 757, with 109 passengers, took off around 2 a.m. Monday from Stapleton International Airport, 65 minutes behind schedule, Eastern spokesman Robin Matell said Thursday.

Several inches of snow fell Sunday night and Monday morning in Denver. And temperatures plunged to near zero.

The issue of de-icing raised much attention in the investigation of the Nov. 15 crash of Continental Flight 1713, in which 28 people were killed and 54 were injured.

Matell said the senior flight attendant on board Eastern Flight 451 has been suspended pending the outcome of a company investigation. He said he did not know the status of the other three attendants. Their names and the name of the pilot have not been released.

The attendants walked off the plane after being told de-icing was not necessary, Matell said. "In order to get the flight off and not inconvenience passengers by having to cancel, the pilot had the plane de-iced."

Stapleton Aviation Director George Doughty said he was unaware of the incident.

FAA regulations require that pilots not attempt takeoff if snow or ice is adhering to the plane's wings.