Paul Ryan thanks troops during trip to Milwaukee area on 9/11 anniversary

CREATED Sep 11, 2012 - UPDATED: Sep 11, 2012

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MILWAUKEE- Vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan is back in Wisconsin.  He came home for the anniversary of September 11.

Ryan stopped by to say thanks to the men and women at the 128th Air Refueling Wing in Milwaukee.  He is familiar with their work, but on the 11-year anniversary of the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001 -- he wanted to honor the troops for their service on a day when the nation paused to remember those who died on 9/11.

"This is a day we should be thinking about the people who gave their lives," said Ryan. "It's a day we are really thankful for those of you who dedicated your lives to keeping us safe, for making our military, our Air Force the undeniable best in the world."

Ryan also stopped for some lunch with the guys at the Oak Creek Fire Department.

Ryan's no stranger in Oak Creek, they know him as their congressman.

But on Tuesday he's on a different mission as a VP candidate.  Ryan remembers seeing the smoke rising from his Capitol Hill location from the terrorist attack in Washington D.C., and the heroic efforts of the first responders.

"I just wanted to come on the anniversary of 9/11 and say thank you to all of you who are first responders for what you do for us everyday."

Ryan holds his first town hall meeting in De Pere on Wednesday.