Video: Watch US soldier Travis King land in Texas after being detained in North Korea

More than two months after he ran across the heavily guarded border into North Korea, video shows American soldier Travis King step onto U.S. soil early Thursday morning.

In a move that garnered international headlines, the U.S. Army private sprinted into North Korea on July 18 after being released from a South Korea prison on an assault conviction.

A U.S. defense official confirmed to USA TODAY King landed in San Antonio, Texas, home to Brooke Army Medical Center, where Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl was treated after being released in 2014 by Taliban captors in Afghanistan.

Travis King: American solider detained in North Korea arrives back on U.S. soil

An escort and a handshake

Footage provided by San Antonio TV station KSAT appears to show King − dressed in a polo shirt, slacks and tennis shoes − walk down passenger stairs off a large plane escorted by three unidentified men.

After descending the stairs the video shows he is greeted by someone dressed in civilian clothing, flanked by three uniformed soldiers, and the pair shake hands.

The group then walks off behind an unidentified building.

Senior White House officials said Wednesday King's release was secured with the help of Sweden and China, though North Korea said it expelled King after completing an investigation into what it described as a defection motivated by "racial discrimination" and "inequality existing within American society."

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This image made from video provided by KSAT purports to show Pvt. Travis King, second right, coming out of an airplane in San Antonio, Texas, early Thursday, Sept. 28, 2023. The American soldier who sprinted into North Korea across the heavily fortified border between the Koreas two months ago arrived back in the U.S. early Thursday, video appeared to show.

'Good health... Good spirits'

King, who bolted across one of the world's most heavily weaponized borders into the country, appeared to be in “good health” and “good spirits,” senior administration officials told USA TODAY on a condition of anonymity this week. King had already spoken with his family.

In this photo taken in Seoul on August 16, 2023, a man walks past a television showing a news broadcast featuring a photo of US soldier Travis King (C), who ran across the border into North Korea while part of a tour group visiting the Demilitarized Zone on South Korea's border on July 18. North Korea has decided to expel US soldier Travis King, who was detained after crossing the border from the South in July, the KCNA state news agency said on September 27.

“We can confirm that Pvt. King was very happy to be on his way home,” an official told reporters Wednesday before National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan officially announced King’s return in a statement.

Initially, King was headed to Fort Bliss, Texas, where he faced the possibility of further U.S. military disciplinary action. Instead, the soldier joined a civilian tour of a border village between the two Koreas. After crossing into North Korea, he became the first American confirmed to be detained in the reclusive country in nearly five years.

Contributing: Maureen Groppe, Kim Hjelmgaard and Tom Vanden Brook, USA TODAY

Natalie Neysa Alund is a senior reporter for USA TODAY. Reach her at and follow her on X, the platform formerly known as Twitter @nataliealund.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Video: Travis King lands in Texas after North Korea detainment