A Military Reunion at the Airport

Yesterday I was flying from St. Louis back to Las Vegas after a wonderful visit with my kids and grandkids. When I got off the plane in Las Vegas and was walking to the baggage claim area the beginning of a touching experience happened.

As I walked in a crowd of people I saw ahead of me a soldier in uniform and a woman standing with him. They stopped me as I was walking. The woman asked me if I was on the flight from Phoenix to Las Vegas (my connecting flight). I told them that I had been on that flight. I then noticed that the woman had a shirt with a USO patch on it.

Since they were very interested in my flight and were definitely both military affiliated I told them that there was a girl in uniform on the flight. I had taken notice of her and thought about her while on my flight. They both were very interested then. They asked me if she had gotten off before me and I told them yes she had. She had been about three or four rows ahead of me.

We chatted a couple minutes more. I asked them if they knew Doug Bradford, the Center Director for the Las Vegas USO. Doug is a good friend of ours and Frank Spady is on the board of the Las Vegas USO. They both said how Doug is the driving force and that they wouldn’t have the USO without him. The woman said she thought Doug was still there and went to see if he was there for me to say hello to. Doug was not there but she said she would tell him hello for us. I then continued on to baggage claim.

As I reached the baggage claim area for my flight I suddenly heard loud footsteps and looked up. The soldier on my flight took off running as fast as she could. Way down the other end of the baggage claim was the soldier that had stopped me just a few minutes earlier. The woman ran till she reached him and jumped into his arms with her legs wrapped around him. They kissed and held each other passionately.

Their reunion was so touching and brought tears to the eyes of many of us passengers that viewed this exciting reunion. As we all waited for our baggage they hugged, kissed, talked, and laughed. It was so touching and heart-warming. I was honored to have played a very small role in their reunion.

Thank you to all that serve and sacrifice for our great country. I hope and pray there are more reunions, just like this one, in the future of our brave military.

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Elizabeth Crane

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