Airports can evoke many emotions, from exciting arrivals to difficult departures. And Friday at the Delta County airport in Escanaba, joy and anticipation were in the air.
Veteran Carl Weisse was finally coming home.
After being away from the U.P. for over 20 years, Carl decided it was time to come back.
â??This is where my heart is; I was raised here,â?? sais Weisse.
Carl served in the 1983 invasion of Grenada, so the Color Guard was more than willing to welcome him at the airport.
A desire to go back to your home is natural. And now there is another reason why Carlâ??s connection to home is stronger than ever. Carl only has a few months left to live.
"Six to 12 months,â?? explained Karen, Carlâ??s sister. â??He'll be receiving chemotherapy simply to reduce the tumor in his chest to make his breathing easier, but he has cancer in his brain that is inoperable.â??
â??I have three brain tumors and a lung tumor,â?? Carl said.
When Karen found out about her brother's condition, she asked if there was anything he needed.
â??First, he said he would like some pasties and some saltwater taffy,â?? she said.
But Karen knew better.
â??So give me something harder to do. And that was to get him up here and back to his home,â?? she explained.
Those who helped with the Hometown Hero welcome say it was the least they could do.
â??We claim to be veterans helping veterans,â?? said President of Vietnam Veterans, Raymond Phillips, Jr., â??and by God, that's what we do."
Upon his arrival, Carl was greeted with salutes, handshakes, and a lot of pasties.
And now, after over two decades of being away, Carl Weisse is finally back where he belongs in the U.P.