Volunteers organize troop homecomings

July 28, 2009 5:38:33 PM PDT
We have seen them at airports greeting active duty military men and women with a hero's welcome. They carry flags and signs and provide a motorcycle escort. So who are these volunteers? There are two organizations working in tandem, "Warrior's Watch" and a "Hero's Welcome" and their mission is to say thank you and to give the often exhausted troops their first parade.

They have taken part in hundreds of welcomes in their relatively young existence. Maria Hyland's daughter, Sharon, started a Hero's Welcome in 2007 before joining the marines herself.

Wayne Lutz of Wyncote founded the "Warrior's Watch" in May of 2008 and it has since expanded into dozens of states and countries were American troops are stationed.

He likes to say a Hero's Welcome provides the cheering and flags and his group provides the noise.

In a nation enamored with celebrities and heroes both organizations say they want to draw attention to what they call the nation's real heroes and celebrities.

The volunteers say there's nothing quite like the emotion of a welcome home.