American Airlines thanks the troops


American Airlines has introduced two new television commercials as a public expression of gratitude and a tribute to those in uniform, veterans and their families. The new TV spots, called, “Thank You” and “Putting Them First,” aim to emotionally connect viewers with active military service members during their travels. The commercials will air beginning Memorial Day weekend.

Via TM Advertising, American’s long-time AOR, the new 30-second commercials were filmed on location at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport, one of American’s hubs.

“As always, our best work for American Airlines grows from their own operation. These TV spots allowed us to elegantly tell the stories of what happens countless times every day on their aircraft,” said Bill Oakley, Managing Director/Chief Creative Officer for TM Advertising. “They are a testament to American’s long-standing support and commitment to all the men and women in uniform.”

“Thank You” tells the story of a traveling solider – unfailingly polite and respectful, as is typical of military in uniform. As he begins his journey with American Airlines, he thanks everyone he meets, including the American employees who help him with self-service check-in, at the Admirals Club, and at the gate. As he boards the plane, a passenger offers him his window seat, and the soldier quietly replies, “I’m fine. But thank you, sir.” As the young solider exits the aircraft upon arrival, he begins to say thank you to the pilot, who stops him and says, “No … thank you,” – in an expression of thanks to every man and women in uniform for their service to the United States.

“Putting Them First” follows a young Marine, seated in a busy gate area prior to boarding a flight. As she is reviewing her documents, an American Airlines gate agent approaches the Marine to tell her the airline is pre-boarding military passengers. As the Marine makes her way to the gate, fellow passengers step aside, smiling and acknowledging her. She makes eye contact with an elderly veteran who rises, saluting her in perfect military form. She pauses, holds his gaze for a moment, then nods. As she boards the aircraft, viewers hear, “To those who put our country first, we’re honored to do the same for you.” 

The commercials close with an invitation to join American in its support of military/veterans as well as other key causes. “Thank You” and “Putting Them First” will begin airing Memorial Day weekend on selected national cable channels, including ESPN, ESPN 2, the History Channel and the Food Network. The spots will continue to air throughout the year to coincide with special observances, including the Fourth of July, Veterans Day and Thanksgiving. Both commercials can be viewed online at