Friday, July 3, 2009

Day 400 - Jul 3, 2009


Kevin did so well today on our flight! It was like being with someone almost normal and I am just so dang proud of him! I must tell you too, how awesome Southwest Airlines was with us today.

First, at the airport in San Antonio, the clerk came over and talked with us for about 10 minutes or more and then he made an announcement just before boarding asking everyone to give a standing ovation to a war hero - Kevin. He told the tale of Kev being in the hospital for a year and how this was his first commercial flight. I started crying like a baby! Kevin (of course) ate it up.

We then boarded first amid all this cheering and the crew asked all the familes with children to go farther back the plane so as not to over-stimulate Kevin.

During the whole flight the stewardesses spoiled him rotten and when they learned it was his birthday on Monday they got on the horn and had the whole plane sing "Happy Birthday" to him.

When we were getting ready to land, they got back on the microphone and asked everyone to sit until Kevin had departed and then asked everyone to remain seated until all of the rest of the military personnel had deboarded.

And when we did depart from the plane, we had to wait for them to get his wheelchair and while the rest of the people from the plane got off and walked past - almost all of them said either "Happy Birthday, Kevin" or "Thank You For Your Service".

I can be honest and say that I was very heart-warmed to see a group of people care so much about a stranger. It was just an all around great flight and I am so thankful that we chose Southwest. And I am so thankful that Kevin could handle the flight and I feel like it's another hurdle jumped.

Lookout World! Here we come!!!


Jessica said...

What an awesome experience! I got a little choked up reading about it. Good for Southwest for treating Kevin the way he deserves and good for the people on the plane celebrating his service! I think people in general really do appreciate what our servicemen and women go through and are happy to go out of their way for them.

I'm glad you're home safe and sound and will pray that Breezy also has a safe drive from Texas. I'm sure it will be nice for you and Kevin to have her close by again! Take care. I'll be thinking of you both and praying for you. Happy Independence Day!

Jeff said...


That was a wonderful flight for you and Kevin. There are nice people in the world and I'm glad Kevin and you got to meet some of them albeit strangers.

I'm happy for you and Kevin that your back in your own home and a much needed rest.

Have a wonderful 4Th of July.


Alison said...

So glad to hear that you had a great flight. And yes, THANK YOU KEVIN (and all our other service members) for your service.

Happy 4th of July!!

Judy B said...

What a wonderful experience!!! So nice for Kevin and yourself to be rewarded with this special service after everything that has gone on until now. What a wonderful way to start your July 4 holiday. Have a great holiday!!

Anonymous said...


armyparents said...

I am so very happy that you had a great flight!!! You have me crying like a baby also. How wonderful SW for doing that for Kevin and you as well you all deserve that and much more.

Please tell Kevin thank you for letting us celebrate the 4th. If not for our servicemen and women that is privalage that we would not get to celebrate.

Josh is unable to come to the cerimony because his leave ends the 14th. He wanted Kevin to know that there is not a day that goes by that he does not think of his brother.

Sending lots of love and prayers. Also praying for a safe return for Breezy.

Anonymous said...

That was a wonderful story.. and of course true to my nature I cried like a baby..Happy 4th of July Kevin.. You are a true hero!!!
AJ and JOhn

Anonymous said...

Wow! That post brought tears to my eyes! Way to go Southwest...way to stand up for heros American's and way to go Kevin, Leslie and Breezy!!! You make us soooo proud!!

Brenda A
Clarion, PA

Jodi said...

That is awesome! I am glad you had such a great experience. And yes, I am crying like a baby too! :-). I am glad you both are home safe and sound and Breezy makes it home safe too.

And as "armyparents" (Hi Deb) stated, THANK YOU to all our service men and women and veterns! Without them, we wouldn't be able to celebrate the 4th of July!

I hope everyone has a safe, great and happy 4th of July!!! It was Andrew's favorite holiday, so it is extra special to us.

Andrew's Aunt Jodi

Long-time RN said...

High five to Kevin and SW! What a relief for you, Leslie, that the flight went so well. Awesome news!

Our thanks to Kevin and your family this 4th of July, and everyday. Good to read you guys are home.

Anonymous said...

Happy July 4th. to all of you. And Kevin, I too, want to thank you for your service to our country. I am so proud of you!!
Leslie, you have all of us crying. How awesome that flight must have been. All of our soldiers deserve that kind of respect and a lot more. Take care and I look forward to seeing you in July. Lots of prayers coming your way..also Happy Birthday to all three of you!!!
Melissa Ion

Anonymous said...

This totally made me cry. I'm so happy for you!

Anonymous said...

Wow, tears so early in the morning! Yes, SW is wonderful - have flown the airlines countless times (they are also good with not losing luggage!).

I could not be more pleased with how things turned out for you and your HERO son.

God bless Kevin and our troops!


Cathy M

i. said...

What an awesomw reminder that there are still people in this world who do care.

Anonymous said...

Wow Leslie, that was touching. So thankful the experience was such a huge sucess. HAPPY 4th and HAPPY Birthday, Kevin!
Janet and family

alalli said...

Happy Birthday Kevin and Breezy, and Hello Leslie,

Glad your flight experience went so well. Ours have been that way too and it's a comfort that people will be happy to welcome soldiers like Kevin and Mark. Not to mention how nice the airlines have been. We had the same treatment from Continental several times now. Have a wonderful Fourth of July.

Love, Ann

Anonymous said...

I, too, am writing through teardropped eyelashes. LOL!! How wonderful that you had a great flight and that "Thanks and respect" were shown. All 3 of you are totally amazing. Happy 4th to all of you and Happy Birthday also. What a great start to the holiday weekend. God Bless you and all of our Troops fighting for our freedom. Michelle Long

Paula from Armstrong said...

Leslie, On this fourth of July as we celebrate our freedoms, it is my honor to thank Keven for the service he has given to our country, and the sacrifices he has made. So, Kevin, thank you. We are so excited for your progress. Paula from Armstrong

Anonymous said...

WOW. . . how great that your flight and the airline treated Kevin the way he SHOULD be treated.I am glad it was a great experience, but I am not surprised that there are more people than not that would "tip their hat" to Kevin and his family. We live in a great country and most of us are very grateful for what our servicemen and women have done for us through the years.

I was just sent an email that said, "Only two defining forces have offered to die for you . .Jesus Christ and the American Soldier . . . one died for your soul, the other for your freedom."

Happy 4th to all and Happy Birthday, Kevin!

God bless.

Lori P said...

Kuddos to Southwest!!!! Kevin you are our hero!!!

Anonymous said...

Hey, Happy 4th of July,

Ok....I'm crying also. But, I think when people are given the opportunity to know that they are looking at a wounded soldier, and that he needs a little TLC, they are happy to give him some praise and some extra space. I'm so glad Kevin could handle the flight and be the reminder to so many .....that we live in a country that is free due to so many that sacrificed for us.
I'm praying for you guys today. I hope today is a special day for your family. Tomorrow....will be the 2nd anniversary of my son's gunfight and wounds, but happy to say that he is with me today!!! Yay.

Just's the pool coming?

Again, thanks to Kevin for his service and the sacrifice of your family.

An ex-army mom,

Vicki C said...

touched to tears

Nicole said...

This is my first time leaving a comment, but I have been a long time reader. I teared up when reading this. I'm from a very liberal state that doesn't appreciate our soliders...I wish I lived in an area that does. This was so heart warming.
My best friend is a Marine in Afghanistan right now, and I'm trying not to worry.
Even though I have never met you or Kevin...I feel like I know you. Thank Kevin for his service, and thank you for everything you do too.
God Bless.