Two Iraq war veterans, who didn’t previously know one another, were united in a suburban Chicago bar by a tragedy that occurred a decade ago.
Noah Ramos received a Facebook message from a fellow Marine he had never met saying “I have something that belongs to you and I want to give it to you in person.”
That “something” was the dog tag of Ramos’ brother, Lance Cpl. Hector Ramos, who was killed in a helicopter crash in Iraq in 2005.
“I was in shock,” Noah Ramos said.
Corey Tibbets was part of the first unit on the scene of the crash 10 years ago—and found the dog tag.
“I picked it up, realized what it was and I’ve had it ever since,” he said in a phone interview.
For 12 years, he kept it safe at his home in Texas—until he traveled to Naperville Saturday to deliver it to Ramos.
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“I know if it were my brother, it would mean everything to me to have that piece of him that he had on him at the end,” Tibbets said.
An appreciative Ramos said he’s gained a friend for life in Tibbets—even though nothing will replace the loss of his little brother.
“Corey just went above and beyond—as a Marine would do—and I feel blessed he’s in my life now,” Ramos said. “I got a piece of my brother back, I couldn’t expect any more.”
Crosstown Pub, with its fitting name, picked up the men's tab after hearing their story.