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Military Families Buy Plane Tickets For Grandmother, Mother Trapped In Chicago

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Dana Kozlov Dana Kozlov
Dana Kozlov is a general assignment reporter for CBS 2 Chicago. She...
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CHICAGO (CBS) – A cold weather heartache – turned happy ending.

CBS 2’s Dana Kozlov reports it is a story of strangers coming to the aid of a mom and grandmother, trapped in Chicago by the nasty conditions.

Laurel Green made special red white and blue cookies for her grandson Dylan Green, set to graduate from Air Force basic training in Texas Thursday. But the cookies, Green and Dylan’s mom Christie Heidger, found themselves stuck in Chicago since Monday due to Amtrak problems.

Heidger says Amtrak officials told her they couldn’t get her out until Thursday, too late for graduation.

Desperate to get to Texas on time, Heidger turned to online support groups for military families – asking if anyone could give her and her mom a ride. To be safe, she told her son she probably wouldn’t make it. Dylan’s disappointment could be heard in a message to her today.

“Love you. Hopefully I can see you before I go to tech school,” Dylan said in the message.

It turns out, fellow military families did more than offer a ride. Total strangers bought mom and grandma two plane tickets and paid for their airport shuttle. It looks like they will make it after all.

“I was ecstatic because I wanted to see Dylan. I love Dylan so much,” said Laurel Green.

“I can’t fathom it. I don’t have the ability to do that for someone else. Why would anyone just help me?” said Heidger.

An Amtrak spokesperson says it’s policy to pay for one night in a hotel. But Heidger says Amtrak offered them nothing. She’s filed a complaint.

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