Apparently not - but why didn't they just tell her to take it to the gate and check it there? And BTW, this was at a TINY airport! Also, her flight the night before was cancelled which was why she was on such a tight timeline. The whole experience was less than desirable.
They would have mentioned it if she was checking luggage less than 45 minutes prior to departure, and it is written on the acknowledgements. I have done this before and it often does make it, but it sounds like that didn't work out in this case. If you were coming from a little airport that didn't have a lot of connections to FLL I can see that it might be a day for the next delivery.
If the bag was too big to carry on they wouldn't be encouraging a gate check, if it was carry-on size and/or had anything in it that wouldn't go through TSA then they would have checked it there.
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