An act of respect caught people’s eyes as they drove down Interstate 70. Now, a photo taken of the touching act is going viral on social media.
The man in the photograph, identified as Bradley Faulkner, is shown pulled over to the side of the highway with his hand over his heart.
The touching salute was for the funeral procession of Fred Ladage, a World War II veteran that was passing by.
Ladage had served in the Navy and Navy Reserves during the war.
He passed away at 91 and his family, about to lay him to rest at the Jefferson Barracks, took part in the funeral procession.
Faulkner, a nine-year Army vet, saw the procession and immediately pulled over. Without hesitation, he got out of his semi-truck and gave a patriotic salute.
In the procession was the deceased veteran’s granddaughter, Kristen Collins. She saw Faulkner out of the car window and snapped the picture.
Only a couple hours after taking the photograph, it managed to reach Faulkner’s wife. Through the connection, him and Collins were able to meet in person.
“While in the funeral procession today to Jefferson barracks to lay my grandfather to rest a man driving a truck pulled off and made honor as we all proceeded,” Collins wrote on Facebook.
“Thank you for showing such great honor – I found and got to personally thank this man!!”
After finding out his identity, Collins drove to their family home in order to thank him.
“It’s just such an honor to be able to meet the person that made such an impact on us for a moment in time,” she told WMAZ.
“For that moment, everything about my grandfather about his legacy and life was important,” she said. “And people were stopping to honor that.”
For Faulkner, the gesture that meant so much to Collins wasn’t a chore at all.
“It doesn’t change or alter your life at all to maybe lift up that one family and say, ‘hey, in your time of need, I’m here for you whether I know you or not,’” he said.
Faulkner himself had served on a tour in Iraq as a member of the military police. Just like Collins, his grandfather was in the armed forces, too.
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