SACRAMENTO, California -- One of the three Americans who helped stop a terror attack on a high-speed train traveling from Amsterdam to Paris returned home to California on Tuesday.
News video showed a relaxed Anthony Sadler, 23, walking off a commercial plane at Sacramento International Airport accompanied by his parents.
The Sacramento State University student was dressed in black shorts and a gray sweatshirt and was carrying a black backpack as the family walked onto the tarmac with the rest of the passengers. Instead of using a jetway to the terminal like other passengers, the family was led to an area where several sheriff's vehicles waited.
The family arrived in Sacramento after taking a private jet to Portland, Oregon. Columbia Sportswear CEO Timothy Boyle had made the jet available to fly the Americans' mothers to France.
Sadler and two Sacramento-area friends, U.S. Air Force Airman Spencer Stone, 23, and Oregon National Guardsman Alek Skarlatos, 22, helped subdue Ayoub El-Khazzani, a man with ties to radical Islam who was carrying a handgun and an assault weapon on the train Friday.
Stone was undergoing treatment at a military hospital in Germany for injuries suffered in the attack. Skarlatos remained with Stone in Germany.
The U.S. Army announced that Skarlatos will be awarded the Soldiers Medal, the U.S. Army's highest award for acts of heroism not involving actual conflict with an enemy.
CBS affiliate KOVR reported Sadler was expected to be back on campus when the fall semester at Sacramento State starts on Monday.
Sacramento State president Robert Nelsen told the station the campus is overwhelmed learning Sadler is set to return to school this year, a kinesiology senior but also a hometown hero. Calls have been coming in to the school from donors eager to pay for Sadler's final year of school.
John Dickson, who arrived on the same plane as Sadler, called him a good friend from the three years they have spent together at Sacramento State.
He said no one noticed Sadler was on the plane until he was approached on board by a TV producer.
"He was very relaxed," Dickson said as he left the Sacramento airport. "Very low key."
Dickson said he, too, was returning from Europe and that he had made plans to meet Sadler during their European vacation.
"We were supposed to link up in Europe but it never happened," he said.
Alina Ezzi was at the Sacramento airport Tuesday hoping to greet Sadler after hearing of his pending arrival through the media.
"I've just been super interested in it," said the San Francisco State University student. "It's a fascinating story: People see what happens and decide to stand up.... I feel like our society is finally stepping up to the plate."
She said that sort of heroic behavior should be rewarded after the 9/11 attacks.