Not anyone is prepared to sacrifice his life for the country.
Therefore, the names of those who have been virtuous enough to do so, should be respected and never forgotten.
Yet, what happened on a Delta Air Lines flight from Frankfurt, Germany to Atlanta was truly special.
On July 18, 2016, onboard the plane was a uniformed Army private escorting home the remains of an American WWII soldier who died on the battlefield in either Germany or France.
The fallen soldier had just been identified via DNA analysis.
When the flight landed, the pilot informed the passengers that they should remain seated so the soldier could deplane first.
They were happy to do so, but what followed was something truly unique!
Namely, among the other passengers on the plane were 60 student singers from the Iowa Ambassadors of Music group. They were going home after a concert tour of Austria, England, France, Germany, Italy, Liechtenstein, and Switzerland.
During the long flight, the choir had already performed two songs for the other passengers.
Yet, when the flight attendants approached the choir director and informed him of the military remains on board and asked if they would help honor the soldier with a song, the choir was more than willing to help.
Luke Johnson, one of the choral directors on the plane, said:
“We were really honored because … in times of need, or times of struggle, people tend to go to music for comfort.”
So, as the Army private deplaned, the singers started singing their grande finale number – “The Battle Hymn of the Republic.”
The emotional moment of voices ringing in honor of the man who had given his life for the country was overwhelming!
Diane Cupp, from Johnson City, Tennessee, a retired director of a juvenile court, was also a passenger on the plane, managed to record a part of the performance, and posted it to Facebook. She said:
“It was so emotional. I was just so proud of the young people who started singing and the respect that they showed. My heart just melted.”
Cupp, together with her husband Robert, a judge, was returning from a 16-day tour of World War II sites in Germany and France. Therefore, this made the entire performance even more touching:
“It melted my heart. I was so proud of them for doing that. It was so heartfelt.”
What’s even funnier, the couple wasn’t even supposed to be on the flight, but rescheduling it proved to be their luck:
“I was on that flight for a reason. All the emotions from our trip of visiting concentration camps and a cemetery for American soldiers, I was just overwhelmed when they made the announcement about the soldier and (the choir) started singing.”
Millions of people have watched the video, and the impromptu memorial touched their hearts!
“Faith in humanity restored. They sounded like Angels from Heaven.”