MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WBTW) — Captain Ben Boyle has flown hundreds of missions in a C-130 aircraft with the US Air Force. In his most recent deployment, he had a particular American flag with him for every single mission.
The reason? It would soon belong to someone back home.
“He’s a very special guy, an incredible leader and I admire him very much,” Boyle said. “So, while I was gearing up and getting ready to go, I knew right away. ‘As soon as I get there, the flag is going in my bag, it’s going on the airplane every single time for him.’”
The flag was meant for Steve Ghidella, the owner of RipTydz in Myrtle Beach. While deployed, Boyle and his crew keep flags with them while performing their missions, knowing when they get back..they’ll give those flags to someone special to them.
“To fly them.. that just shows that we’re always thinking about you and we’re bringing some of your energy with us,” Boyle said. “It really helps us stay calm and stay focussed while doing what we’re doing.”
The flag, however, was not the only thing Boyle always had with him; he flew every mission while wearing his Myrtle Beach Pelicans hat.
“I thought what better than to bring a little piece of home with me and have some of that good beach energy with me and that winning energy that The Pelicans love to bring.”
Boyle said while he and his crew appreciate people thanking them for their service… the real heroes are the ones who don’t come home.
“Oftentimes, when we come home, a lot of people will call us heroes,” Boyle said. “I can’t tell you how much we appreciate that, it really does mean a lot. We’re no heroes. I’m no hero. Heroes are the ones who never came home. Heroes are the ones who gave it their all and it’s a sacrifice that I can’t even fathom.
“Me? I’m just a beach bum with an undying passion for flying, and that’s all I am.”