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Battle Of Fallujah Veterans Take Flight At iFLY Austin

Updated: Monday, July 7 2014, 11:48 AM CDT

The eighth annual Battle of Fallujah Veterans reunion was in Austin Sunday at iFLY Austin.

The smile on the faces of these veterans said it all after the veterans had the chance to soar to new heights.

"This was a lifetime experience I've never done skydiving or free falling like this so for this to happen was just a really big show of appreciation," Iraqi Veteran Styves Exantus said.

Exantus fought alongside these Iraqi veterans in the battle of Fallujah, one of the deadliest battles in Iraq.

More than 50 US soldiers were killed and more than 400 were injured.

To honor those who fought for this country two Veterans funds, Children of Fallen Soldiers Relief Fund and Semper Fi Fund, arranged for the veterans to take flight at iFLY Austin.

Many of the veterans haven't seen each other in almost a decade.

"You realize not everyone understands you like your brother does," Exantus said.

And that's a sentiment shared by all of the Veterans including Karl Bielfeldt.

"It's more closure and getting back with the guys that you shed blood and sweat with," Bielfeldt said.

This reunion was a way to have some fun and forget for a little while what they have been through.

"It helps you get through the year to where you can come back and get that feeling again," Bielfeldt said.

For these veterans the flight was recognition that people appreciate the sacrifices they have made.

"For people who are not in the military to show us that kind of appreciation and dedication it means the world to us," Iraqi Veteran Troy Bader said.

By Rachel Kent

Battle Of Fallujah Veterans Take Flight At iFLY Austin


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