TULSA -- Tears hit the tarmac as United State's Air Force Col. Martin Ronald Scott's remains were given full honors, draped with the American flag on Thursday.
His story, is one of hope and faith after his body was reunited with family after he was declared missing in action for the last 51 years.
Chills were running rampant across everyone's skin as the emotional homecoming took place.
A Vietnam Airman, missing since 1966 is finally back on American soil, surrounded by those who never gave up hope.
For 51 years, Don Daniels stared at the picture of his uncle on his wall. For 51 years, the man in the picture's whereabouts remained a mystery.
“At night sometimes I think about him, wondering what he's doing and where he is at,” Daniels, U.S. Navy veteran and nephew of Col. Scott said.
Col. Scott left on an honorable mission to Vietnam as a Captain of a Phantom fighter in 1966. When his plane went down, he disappeared on enemy soil, but his memory lived on.
“He was always in the back of your mind,” Daniels, said.
Family and friends were clinging to the phrase “No man left behind,” and 51 years later, that phrase would ring true. Daniels said Col. Scott’s son, Ron received a phone call this year that took everyone by surprise.
“He called and told me, he said, ‘I got some news.’ And I said what, and he goes, ‘They found dad,’” Daniels said.
On Sept. 21, 2017, Col. Scott received full honors, and landed at the Tulsa International Airport. His family all gathered, witnessing what they believe to be a miracle.
“It was amazing to me,” Daniels said. “That they were still over there looking for him.”
Community members in Claremore lined the streets as Col. Scott’s remains made their way to Rice Funeral Home.
“We want to honor our service people and show the families that we care,” Penelope Snyder, a Claremore resident said,
All were ecstatic to welcome home a fallen hero.
“Im proud of him,” Daniels said. “I’ve always been proud of him. But I’m even prouder that he's home now.”
A world that once felt incomplete, now feels whole, while a family can now push play on the timeline of fallen war hero, Col. Ronald Scott.
“Now that we know, it's a closure for us,” Daniels said.
A funeral for Col. Scott will be held Friday at 2 pm at the Rice Funeral Home in Claremore. All are encouraged to join to give Col. Scott a proper goodbye, as well as a welcome home.
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