On May 23, 2012, World War II veterans on an Honor Flight from South Carolina arrived in Washington DC to visit the WWII Memorial. A US Airways gate attendant announced over the loud speakers that the veterans would be arriving shortly and encouraged passers-by to greet them.
Chris, who stood by with his camera and posted the following video on YouTube, says, “Five or six people looked like they were officially part of the welcoming committee, and the rest of the people in the secure section of the airport were regular old travelers going somewhere. Then I had a terrible thought. What if these veterans came off the plane and just those five or six individuals were there to greet them? I walked a gate over to help see the veterans out.”
Then, out of nowhere, a “flash mob” of sorts broke out — but this one has nothing to do with choreographed dance routines or singing choirs. Travelers spontaneously left their gates throughout the terminal and gathered around gate 38. A few active military personnel asked to join in the salute as the heroes stepped off the plane. Everyone in the terminal stood at attention and faced the door.
“The first soldier walked through the door. Old, frail and needing help walking,” Chris said. “And every person I could see in the entire airport stood and cheered. For a full 20 minutes, as veteran by veteran stepped out of the jet way, the US Airways wing of Reagan National Airport thundered in appreciation. Travelers stepped out for the opportunity to shake their hand while others held back tears.”
This is what honor looks like. Please SHARE this touching moment with your friends on Facebook!