Ride Report posted for Michael K.

Sunday January 31st, 2010 the Warrior’s Watch had the honor along with the townspeople of Elgin, IL to welcome home Army Medic Sp. Aaron Shaw. Aaron was coming home on a 2 week leave from one of the most hostile areas in the world today. Just a little background on Aaron..He and 26 other US soldiers and 20 something mixed Afghan troops are stationed on the northern most base right near the Afghanistan/Pakistan border. Whenever they need supplies that have to be flown in by helicopter because of the extreme dangers. This just shows the kind of dangers this brave soldier is faced with each day. When I heard about this mission I was very eager to want to RC this mission and get in contact with both Aaron’s Mom and Aunt. Both were extremely helpful with assisting in getting this done for Aaron. Sunday wound up being one of the most gorgeous days…Yes it was cold, it’s a Chicago winter…But it was one of the first sunny days we had in a long time and I had to believe that this was because of the events to occur. As I was running a little behind time, I received a call from Glen aka Bear hug that the parking lot where we were staging was filling up with many “Warriors”, family members, and people just passing by who wanted to be part of today’s welcome home…As soon as we got everyone organized we were told Aaron was on his way…Once arrived the whole parking lot was full of people yelling “WELCOME HOME AARON”!!!!, clapping, and US Flags waiving in the air…Was one of the happiest moments for Aaron’s Parents, brother, Aunts and Uncles…By the way one of his Uncles was a “River Rat” from Vietnam, who was so happy to see Aaron…Especially seeing him receive the welcome home he so deserved compared to how Aaron’s Uncle and “brothers” were treated some 30+ years ago…Well getting back to the family, both Aaron’s Mom and Aunts were very emotional to see there son safely home. Once Aaron was hugged

to an inch of his life, we were set to escort him to the Riverside Club (Veteran’s hall) that the family was throwing a Christmas Party. Aaron’s family had waited this whole time to celebrate Christmas until there “Warrior” returned home to them…To celebrate such a special day like Christmas would just not be the same to them without having Aaron there with them…Again this is the type of families we serve and are eager to sign up and want to serve again and again. Well the celebration ended with our short presentation and let me say it again was a honor to give Aaron a hug and welcome him home. I honestly can say Aaron was the tallest/muscular person I believe I met in my life and I’m sure his buddies back in Afghanistan are glad for that as well…If needed I’m sure Aaron could throw one man over each shoulder. Although he was a “Goliath” of a man, he was one of the nicest/humble soldiers I have meet. Thank you Aaron for your service to our

country. We can never thank you enough for all that you have given and sacrificed on our part to protect the freedom we love so very much. Thank you Aaron.