Stranger buys plane ticket for soldier trying to visit family

GRANITE CITY, IL (WCMH) – A soldier who was stuck in an airport for two days was able to make it home to see his family thanks to the generosity of a stranger.

Keaton Tilson was granted last minute leave to go home, KTVI reports. He went to the airport in Dallas to try and fly as a standby passenger. After two days of trying, it was beginning to look like he wouldn’t make it.

A stranger at the airport, Josh Rainey, attempted to give up his seat for Tilson. The airline told him that wasn’t allowed. So, after discussing it with his wife, he decided to buy Tilson a ticket.

“Got discouraged. Apologized. He thanked me. I walked away, and I called my wife, which I would do in a situation like that to kind of ask for her advice, and we agreed both that it was the right thing to do to go back and buy the ticket,” said Rainey.

“I’m very appreciative, because if it wasn’t for him, I probably wouldn’t be here right now,” Tilson said. “Honestly, I feel like I would still be at the airport, because it’s Memorial Day weekend.”

Rainey said he is keeping the receipt from the airline on his refrigerator to remind himself of what is really import in life, family and serving others. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s