I sat down on the bus next to this wonderful man and we just connected! He was really proud to be traveling on this trip of a lifetime and I knew I would have a hard time keeping up with him! (No, I wasn't his guardian but I would step in and help out if anyone needed me)
At the St. Louis airport I don't know how they do it but somehow we all make it through security pretty quickly and fairly smoothly. (You realize many of these men and women that travel on an honor flight haven't flown in years and we know things have changed over the past several years)
Something really cool that I have never seen before was one of the ladies that check your boarding pass as you head down the jet way began singing "God Bless America" to our veterans. You talk about cool... Oh my gosh that was awesome!
Veterans listening to Southwest Airlines welcoming them aboard this flight!
(I'm telling you that it's really cool to see these men and women getting treated the way they should always be treated. They don't know how to act but hopefully they see that we really do care about them and thankful for their service to our country.)
They had no clue this would be waiting for them when they got off the plane in Baltimore!
When we arrived at the World War II Memorial this veteran took my hand and we walked around the entire memorial! He was so sweet and he was so excited to be there! At 92 years old he said he doesn't have any arthritis and gets around like a 38 year old! I really enjoyed spending time with this World War II veteran...
He really loved these bronze pieces...
Sarah Hill, along with a film crew interviewed him at his memorial.
(They are filming with a 360 degree camera for something upcoming to take World War II veterans who are too sick or unable to travel on an honor flight. This will give them the ability to see their memorial in a very realistic way - as if they were there. More information to come)
I am beginning to really love the Vietnam Veterans Memorial more and more. Each time I am here I feel closer to those men and women that didn't get to come home. By helping our Vietnam veterans find the names of their buddies, classmates and family members is so special. I try to go above and beyond to find as much information about these men and women so that our veterans can have some closure. By letting them etch the names on the wall you feel the love, heartache, pain and happiness. They are happy to be there yet it hurts. I also do an etching for them in the event something happens to their etching or if they want one to give to a family member. It's a kind gesture and one I know they appreciate.
It's always interesting to see what is left behind at the memorial....
At the Air Force Memorial we had a special guest...
4-Star General Frank Grass!
He is such a genuine guy and made sure to shake the hand of every veterans before leaving!
When we arrived to the airport back in St. Louis there was an adorable family that was welcoming their dad/grandpa home!
This was such a wonderful surprise!
I even got a surprise and got to see John!
I was his veteran on a past Central Missouri Honor Flight!
Another amazing and memorable Central Missouri Honor Flight in the books! I am so glad this Vietnam Veteran was able to go on this flight as he passed away just a few short weeks later. If you know of a World War II, Korean or Vietnam Veteran please go to the following website and print off an application, fill it out and get it turned in. Remember that Central Missouri Honor Flight can't ask them to go on a flight if they don't know who they are!