Sunday (19 Feb. 2012), bagpipers, an honor guard and flag waving friends, airport employees and community supporters will greet Marine Corporal Mike Nicholson at Tampa International Airport.
The community is encouraged to join the welcome the wounded Marine at the Airside F shuttle or along Bayshore Boulevard.
Cpl. Nicholson, 22, is the son of John Nicholson, a 13 year employee at TIA. The young Marine lost both legs and his left arm while on combat foot patrol in Afghanistan in July when a hidden explosive went off. He has endured 23 surgeries, but is making an extraordinary recovery, learning to walk again with the help of prosthetics.
Welcoming him home will be a motorcade that includes the Patriot Guard Riders, Tampa police officers and Hillsborough County Sheriff’s deputies which will lead Cpl. Nicholson from the airport, down Bayshore Boulevard and then to Christ the King Church for a ceremony.
Nicholson had one wish about his homecoming.
“He wanted to ride down Bayshore Boulevard,” Hartmann said.
The motorcade will travel from Tampa International Airport to downtown, south on Ashley Drive, right on Brorein Street, left on Bayshore Boulevard, right on Bay to Bay Boulevard, right on Church Avenue and on to the pavilion at Christ the King.
His flight is scheduled to arrive Sunday, Feb. 19 at 1:45 p.m. in the main terminal near the Airside F shuttle.
The welcome home ceremony is scheduled for 3 p.m. at Christ the King Church pavilion, on Church Street near South Dale Mabry Highway.