Bagpipes, flags welcome WWII veterans heading back to France for D-Day anniversary

There were bagpipes, flags, and a grand procession at O'Hare Airport's Terminal 1 as three World War II veterans headed back to France on Monday.

The trip is in honor of the 80th anniversary of D-Day and the Battle of Normandy, where western Europe was liberated after 150,000 allied soldiers drove out Nazi German forces.

"Many of us here could not even fathom the sacrifices and contributions you made to our country," said Omar Idris of United Airlines.

The special honorees are Corporal John L. Hodges, Private First Class Sydney Levit, both of the U.S. Army, and Tony Malin of the U.S. Navy.

"You realize how bad it was when you walk the cemeteries in France," Malin said.

The three men and their families were cheered all the way to the gate as the event was coordinated by United Airlines and its United for Veterans Group.

"Just hearing them play the music, everyone stood up and got on their feet. I was trying my best not to tear up," said Jimmy Oliver, who was on the same flight.

Even more special, the entire flight crew to France was made up of veterans.