(Via The Blaze) …As the plane pulled in with a full police and fire escort, front and back, DiScala said that when the jet door opened, another military officer addressed the escort onboard who was standing at attention. The officer then stepped onboard and addressed the passengers:
“I just addressed the escort,” he said. “It is a sworn oath to bring home, to the family, the fallen. Today you all did that, you are all escorts — escorts of the heart.” The officer then thanked the passengers and walked off the plane, DiScala wrote.
“As you can imagine, everyone was silent and no one got up,” he wrote, adding that, “I’m sure most had meteor-sized lumps in their throats and tears in their eyes like I did.”
After deplaning, DiScala said “a large number of passengers, who are normally in a hurry to get home or make a connection” were standing by the window in the waiting area to witness the Honor Guard and family of the fallen soldier waiting while LAX baggage handlers and a military loadmaster removed the flag-covered casket first from the cargo hold — a sight that was “humbling to say the least.”…
Prayers to the Family
Delta Flight 2255 from Atlanta to Los Angeles seemed to be an ordinary flight but it turned out to be everything but ordinary. When the somber captain got on the PA system about 45 minutes prior to landing to inform us we were transporting a fallen soldier the whole plane fell silent. Here’s my video and story http://www.johnnyjet.com/2013/10/fall…
From Johnny Jet:
…But this transcontinental flight turned out to be everything but ordinary. We later learned, when the captain got on the PA system about 45 minutes prior to landing, that we were transporting a fallen soldier. The plane went quiet as he explained that there was a military escort on-board and asked that everyone remain seated for a couple of minutes so the soldiers could get off first. He also warned us not to be alarmed if we see fire trucks since Los Angeles greets their fallen military with a water canon salute. See my video below.
A few minutes after touchdown, we did indeed have a water canon salute, which I’d previously only experienced on happy occasions like inaugural flights. This time, the water glistening on the windowpanes looked like tears.
Passengers in the airport must have been worried when they saw our plane pull into gate 69A, as we had a full police and fire escort, front and back.
I was on the left side of the plane and later realized that the family could be seen off to the right, standing with the United States Army Honor Guard. According to Wikipedia, each military branch has its own honor guard, usually military in nature, and is composed of volunteers who are carefully screened. One of the primary roles for honor guards is to provide funeral honors for fallen comrades.