We turn to a breakthrough in the all out effort to get an american veteran of the korean war free. The north koreans have taken custody of the 85-year-old grandfather, his family pleading for his... See More
We turn to a breakthrough in the all out effort to get an american veteran of the korean war free. The north koreans have taken custody of the 85-year-old grandfather, his family pleading for his release. The state department joining in. Tonight merrill newman is home. You can see the crowd surrounding him as he landed in california. Abc's aditi roy tonight, from los angeles. Reporter: Merrill newman is home and free. Good morning. I'm delighted to be home. Reporter: The 85-year-old grandfather is back on american soil. Just in time for the holidays, after being detained for 42 days in north korea. The retired finance executive was in the country for a ten day sight seeing trip but was pulled from his flight home by government officials held for hostile acts he allegedly committed there 60 years ago in the korean war. He apologized in this video confession released by the north korean government. There is misleading information and propaganda. Reporter: Throughout his captivity his family in california has pleaded for his safe return. Sending him medication for a heart condition. We just hope whatever that misunderstanding is, it will be resolved. Very quickly. And that he can return and be at our table for the holidays. Reporter: In the end, north korea state run news agency said he was deported because of his health problems along with that apology. While this story has a happy ending, the u.S. Is calling on north korea to release another american, kenneth bae who has been detained in north korea for more than a year. David. Aditi, thank you.
This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.