When 13 U.S. Marines were heading home after completing a tour in Afghanistan, they learned that American Airlines has a special policy for military servicemen and women. At the time, they were flying in economy class from Chicago to San Diego. These brave men and women are eligible for a free upgrade to first class whenever it is possible.
The marines were overjoyed when they heard this policy. Many of them had never flown first class and were excited for the new experience.
It turns out, only six seats were empty in first class, which meant that half of them would not be upgraded. Until something quite remarkable happened, Seven people in first class vacated their seats so the remaining Marines could all sit together.
Captain Pravin Rajan said, “It was incredibly touching. Afghanistan is a very complex and ambiguous war… and a difficult thing to keep track of so it is amazing when… there is still that kind of community, that level of support, the willingness to go out of one’s way.” As if that wasn’t awesome enough, in Chicago another plan was set in moition. John Colas, a former 74-year-old Marine USO volunteer, phoned local police stations, fire departments, and others in order to create a special welcoming for the marines in Chicago.
“There must have been 15 Chicago fireman and an equal number of Chicago police and they formed a corridor for the Marines when they got off the airplane,” Colas said.
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