Travelers at Nashville’s busy airport over the weekend stopped to sing “The Star-Spangled Banner,” paying respects to a plane full of children who’d had a parent die in combat.
“At the Nashville airport I walked out into the concourse to this scene @americanairlines was flying a plane full of children who had lost a parent in combat to Disneyworld on an all-expenses-paid trip and they threw a party for them at the gate,” Jen Tringale wrote on Facebook on Saturday.
“But when they announced them over the loud speaker and they lined up to board the plane the whole airport literally stopped and sang the national anthem with military present in salute. Most every person standing around, myself included was bawling at the sight of these kids and spouses who have paid so great a price for our country. To see all of this at Christmas time was so humbling.
“Seeing the general public in an airport stand still to honor these kids was simply beautiful,” Tringale wrote.
The vacations for the Gold Star families were coordinated by the Gary Sinise Foundation’s Snowball Express Program. According to a press release from the organization, the foundation will “host a five-day experience for 1,722 children of the fallen and their surviving parent or guardian. This therapeutic retreat will offer fun and inspiring programs, encouraging critical peer-to-peer support for these families.”
The social-media post had earned around 9,000 impressions and was shared approximately 6,100 times as of Monday evening.