It was cold and crisp this morning when PFC Tucker’s  mother called me at 9:30 to inform me that the PFC, whose arrival at O’hare Airport was scheduled for 5:30PM caught an early plane out of Atlanta and would be here at noon.  After conferring with NIL Coordinator, Matter the calendar was updated and we hoped for the best.  We do short notice pretty well, but this was VERY short notice.  I told Donna Tucker Portell that I would be at the Des Plaines Oasis to welcome her son home, but I couldn’t promise anyone else on such short notice.  But I knew better.

Both mom and dad called from the airport to tell me they were on the way, but neither one asked how many of us were waiting at the Oasis.  I think they were afraid to ask, but their faces told the story when they pulled into our flag line.  WWR was out in force!!

Eric hopped out the car into my arms with tears in his eyes as shouts of “Welcome Home” filled the air.   After a round of hugs, we put him back into the pickup with his brother, Tim and our convoy, about 20 cars long hit the tollway for the 20 minute ride out to Hoffman Estates.  Off the highway, Hoffman Estates PD had traffic blocked for us and led us to some waiting Hoffman Fire trucks for the final leg home.  Once there we beaded and coined our young hero, then moved into the garage for the banner signing.  PFC Tucker was getting cold.  Some more pictures, some more hugs and we were on our way.   PFC Tucker need to get some shuteye before he headed Downtown with his brother and sister to do some celebrating.  I gotta remember to bring an extra jacket for the next guy. 

Bob Abrams AKA “RJ”