Texas mother receives tribute flag after 9 years - 7News Boston WHDH-TV

Texas mother receives tribute flag after 9 years

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A special tribute to a fallen U.S. Marine has after nine years, finally found its way to where it was intended to end up: with his family.

Patsy Maciel has always treasured the American flag that draped her son's coffin nine years ago. U.S. Marine Lance Cpl. Fred Maciel was killed in a helicopter crash in Iraq.

"He told me he was born to be a Marine," she said.

Now has come an unexpected tribute to her fallen son from complete strangers who found another flag with very special meaning at a Texas flea market.

Lanie Brown bought the flag with her husband for only $5 because it was covered with writing. They showed it to their son, a fellow Marine.

"As soon as he looked at it he said 'Dad, this is a tribute flag,' and he said everyone in the unit signs it whenever a Marine falls," Brown said.

Through Facebook, the Browns were able to find Patsy and contact her.

"She goes: 'I wanted to meet you.' She wanted to meet the mother of this Marine that gave his life. That was awesome," Maciel said.

The Brown's, who live four hours away, wanted to present the flag in person.

"All Marine kids are your kids too, and so we, we felt an immediate need and responsibility to get this back to them," Brown said.

So on Saturday, they did meet and the two Marine moms finally got to embrace as a hallowed flag finally came home.

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