Dear Editor,

I recently went on an Honor Flight with a group of 74 veterans on a flight to Washington D.C. at no cost to the veterans. We saw the memorials dedicated to the fallen soldiers of each branch. We visited the Vietnam Wall, the Iwo-Jima Flag Rising memorial and the Lincoln Memorial. We went to Arlington National Cemetery to see the changing of the guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.

While traveling to these memorials, we passed many other notable structures including the Whitehouse, Jefferson Memorial, the Capital, the Washington Monument and the Pentagon. That was a lot to see and it required split second timing to do it all in one day.

The people in D.C. treated us like royalty. We had a police escort so there was no waiting for traffic lights and other traffic was stopped to let us pass. My bother-in-law, who was part of our group, and I were given the same guide who was a charming lady named Jennifer. She had never been to D.C. either. She made a wonderful experience better.

On our return flight we had mail call, every veteran received dozens of letters of support. There were cards and letters from elementary students to people in their 90’s. When we landed in Escanaba, we were welcomed home by hundreds of people.

This was not a one-day event. The day before our flight, a banquet was held in our honor. We had an excellent meal, a very good choral group performed and each veteran received personal recognition by standing when his name was called. Each Veteran received a tote bag, Honor Flight blanket, t-shirt, jacket and a cap.

In addition to other miscellaneous items, our lodging wasn’t just at a motel. We stayed in a suite with plush couches, chairs and two bathrooms for three people. The lodging was not free but was highly discounted. The Honor Flight Committee sponsored one of the most organized events I have ever been a part of. Everyone on the flight will never forget this event.

Thank you for sending me along with other veterans from different branches of the service on the Honor Flight. I deeply appreciate this opportunity. It was a very special experience I’ll always remember. I encourage all veterans or the people who love them to contact the Honor Flight Committee. Veterans eligible are men and women who have served during World War II, the Korean War, and the Vietnam Era. The wait averages two years to get on an Honor Flight but it is worth the wait.

Contact honorflight.com to fill out your application today. Although we are only a group of old soldiers, you won’t let us fade away.

 

Dave Johnson

Menominee