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iadguy73
Topic Author
Posts: 121
Joined: Mon Jan 24, 2005 2:48 am

Flying Fallen Service Members Home

Mon Feb 21, 2005 4:32 am

3 days ago I witnessed yet another tragic reminder of the real cost of the Iraqi occupation...

As I boarded the mobile lounge at the midfield concourse at IAD heading to the main terminal, I spotted a Marine GySgt in dress blues standing down on the ramp next to a UA A320 with it's cargo door open. I knew immediately what was taking place. As the curtains on the baggage cart were pulled aside, the cart revealed its lonely payload. A coffin packaged in white carton box labeled "HUMAN REMAINS" was slowly moved to the conveyor belt and as it slowly moved up to the cargo hold, the Marine solemnly rendered a salute. I couldn't help myself, my eyes swelled with tears.

I wonder if commercial airlines carry our fallen service members and their military escorts home free of charge or get reimbursed by DOD?
 
Goldenshield
Posts: 5029
Joined: Sun Jan 14, 2001 3:45 pm

RE: Flying Fallen Service Members Home

Mon Feb 21, 2005 4:39 am

They are shipped by what are known as GBL's, or Government Bills of Lading. It's like a blank check from the government.
Two all beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onions on a sesame seed bun.
 
flysc
Posts: 132
Joined: Tue Jan 20, 2004 3:49 am

RE: Flying Fallen Service Members Home

Mon Feb 21, 2005 5:19 am

Very interesting story. I wonder how many times this happens and no one notices. I think that it really stinks that our Airman, Sailors, Soldiers and Marines often times give the ultimate sacrafice and no one notices. I think it would be a good gesture for the airlines to help out. I hope that this service member was able to get a military funeral to pay respect for what they did. I know I have heard that some military members have not gotten Military funerals because there are not enough Honor Guards to go around to all of the funerals. I hope that in the future all of our military members may get the proper respect for their services.
Fly Safely,
Jason D.
I do not fail!!! I succede at finding what does not work!!!
 
dl757md
Posts: 1483
Joined: Mon May 24, 2004 9:32 am

RE: Flying Fallen Service Members Home

Mon Feb 21, 2005 5:36 am

I watched on the ramp as a Marine was unloaded at SLC. It was very moving and there was a color guard. I think the ceremony when they arrive at their home airport is much more elaborate than when they are loaded in. The coffin was removed from the box and draped in the flag before it came out of the cargo hold. The parents were on the ramp and the utmost respect was paid to them and the fallen Marine.

This might get more informed responses in the military av forum.

Dl757Md
757 Most beautiful airliner in the sky!
 
Goldenshield
Posts: 5029
Joined: Sun Jan 14, 2001 3:45 pm

RE: Flying Fallen Service Members Home

Mon Feb 21, 2005 6:15 am

It all depends on the situation, or where it is, I guess.

I've witnessed the full fanfare where the first thing off the plane was the HR, where they put it on the beltloader, took off the top and draped the flag, complete with honor guard and airport police as security (or as bystanders -- take your pick.) Other times, it came to the cargo facility like any other, and we just put it straight into the hearst. It was all in a day's job, really.
Two all beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onions on a sesame seed bun.
 
ANCFlyer
Posts: 21391
Joined: Mon Nov 15, 2004 3:51 pm

RE: Flying Fallen Service Members Home

Mon Feb 21, 2005 6:38 am

Quoting FlySC (reply 2):
I know I have heard that some military members have not gotten Military funerals because there are not enough Honor Guards to go around to all of the funerals.


I assure you, Sir, that what you heard is pure bullshit. Every fallen soldier, sailor, airman, Marine and Coast Guardsman gets a Military Funeral, unless it is specifically declined by the next of kin. Period.

As for this story, let me point out that every fallen service member is escorted all the way home. It's the very least we can do. The varying levels of "fanfare" as it was called - I prefer the term "honors" depends on a host of factors, but be assured there is an escort present.
FOR THOSE THAT FOUGHT FOR IT, FREEDOM HAS A FLAVOR THE PROTECTED WILL NEVER KNOW OR UNDERSTAND
 
flysc
Posts: 132
Joined: Tue Jan 20, 2004 3:49 am

RE: Flying Fallen Service Members Home

Mon Feb 21, 2005 1:02 pm

I think that all the servicemembers that are currently in service do get a military funeral but what I was talking about was many of the retired military members. I know that I have seen several times where it can be hard to find an honor guard to provide a military funeral for some of the retired members because many of them are so busy. I think that even some of the VFW's often end up doing some from what I understand. I could be wrong but I have heard this on several instances. I just hope that we can provide the proper final respects to all of our service members.
Fly Safely,
Jason D.
P.S. ANCFlyer I see in your profile that you served in the Army. I want to say Thank you for that. I am planning on going to OTS for the Air Force after I finish my last year here at college and look forward to serving our Great County.
I do not fail!!! I succede at finding what does not work!!!
 
bennett123
Posts: 10711
Joined: Sun Aug 15, 2004 12:49 am

RE: Flying Fallen Service Members Home

Tue Feb 22, 2005 4:23 am

Why does the Military not fly them home?.
 
cha747
Posts: 807
Joined: Mon Dec 15, 2003 1:07 pm

RE: Flying Fallen Service Members Home

Tue Feb 22, 2005 6:16 am

The remains of servicemembers who are abroad at the time of their death are flown back to Dover Air Force Base in Delaware. There they are processed (official paperwork??) and sent on to their loved ones. During the first Gulf War there was a great deal of media coverage of the planes landing in Dover as the remains were being offloaded. IIRC, families would come to Dover to receive the remains of their loved ones.

The current administration has ordered a media "blackout" during our war on terror. Seems that the government wants to hide from the American people the human suffering and loss of life associated with our current campaigns in the Middle East. I've seen no pictures or stories from Dover lately...anybody else have?
Piedmontgirl was always right
 
ANCFlyer
Posts: 21391
Joined: Mon Nov 15, 2004 3:51 pm

RE: Flying Fallen Service Members Home

Tue Feb 22, 2005 6:34 am

Quoting FlySC (reply 6):
ANCFlyer I see in your profile that you served in the Army. I want to say Thank you for that. I am planning on going to OTS for the Air Force after I finish my last year here at college and look forward to serving our Great County.


Your welcome, my privilege. I hope you enjoy the Air Force, and good luck at OTS.
FOR THOSE THAT FOUGHT FOR IT, FREEDOM HAS A FLAVOR THE PROTECTED WILL NEVER KNOW OR UNDERSTAND
 
ETStar
Posts: 1850
Joined: Mon Jan 12, 2004 6:25 am

RE: Flying Fallen Service Members Home

Tue Feb 22, 2005 7:46 am

Too bad these are not televised or accessible to media. This is such a disservice to those who lose their lives representing people from their own country.

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