by Wiley Dodd
December 1970, I was on my way home for leave from Ft. Hood Texas. I took a bus from Killen to Dallas love field. The airport was packed with College kids also. I asked the ticket agent for a ticket to Detroit, No hope for stand by, She said as a serviceman in uniform you go ahead of these college kids. I took the standby ticket and headed for the gate. Long walk to the gate I got there, all the seats were taken and college kids were standing in the gate area. I walked up the gate desk and showed the guy my ticket and he said you have no chance all standby is filled. I told him I had priority. He got indignant and said no you don't SARGENT!
All these other stand by's heard all of this and it real quiet around me. Now this was 1970 Kent state year and Servicemen weren't getting any love from anywhere. I responded to the guy you had better check with your management. The manager came to the gate he must have been close. He was a middle aged guy and looked like a vet. He picked up the seating chart seen an opening and said right this way Sergeant. I turned and gave the crowd a big grin, the hate on there faces was clearly evident. He seated me in first class .