Gen. Barry McCaffrey (AP photo)      

Special Greeting For Soldiers Returning Home

Mark Johnson reporting for CBS 11 News, Dallas / Fort Worth TX

      (CBS 11 News) Cheers, hugs and handshakes are now familiar at DFW Airport’s Terminal B.

      On Tuesday morning, Soldiers returning to the United States for two weeks of rest were greeted by a special guest – retired four-star general Barry McCaffrey, there for a pep talk with the heroes returning home.

      “I was kind of in awe for a little bit,” said Army Specialist Nicholas Smelser, “because I really didn’t know what to expect.”

      The battle-hardened veteran of Vietnam and the Persian Gulf did more than just stand in line and shake hands. He greeted the troops personally as they got off the plane.

      “Armies don’t fight wars, countries fight wars,” said McCaffrey. “When you get the Armed Forces knowing people support them, they’re effective.”

      Staff Sgt. Luther Williams said, “He just thanked us for what we’ve done and what we’re doing, and that he’s really proud of all of the work we’re doing over there, and it’s made our country very safe.”

      Staff Sgt. Frank Sarratt continued, “It shows for these young soldiers that even if you’re retired, you still care to come out on your own time and talk to you, instead of someone in a uniform because they have to.”

      McCaffrey’s visit was brief, but it made a lasting impression.

      Pfc. Kathryn Baker said, “He’s a very good man, and he’s obviously a true patriot.”

      (CBS 11 News)