DALLAS (

TheStreet

) --

American Airlines

and its parent

AMR

(AMR)

have filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection and CEO Gerard Arpey has retired.

The filing comes after the world's third-largest carrier reached a point when it seems unable, after five years of talks, to reach a contract deal with its pilots union.

Tom Horton, who had been president, has been named chairman and CEO.

American said it would operate normally, honoring all tickets and reservations. The carrier has $4.1 billion in cash to pay its bills during bankruptcy.

-- Written by Ted Reed in Charlotte, N.C.

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