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Air Station service members meet Honor Flight veterans

By Cpl. Brendan Roethel | | May 22, 2014

In an act of respect to those who gave so much, service members from the Tri-Command met with World War II, Korean War, and Vietnam veterans to speak about military times at the 165th Airlift Wing, Georgia Air National Guard installation, Pooler, Ga., May 16.

The service members spoke with the veterans prior to their departure for Washington, D.C., as part of the Honor Flight’s initiative of getting as many World War II, Korean War, and Vietnam Veterans as possible to Washington, D.C. Through the Honor Flight program, veterans receive an all-expense paid trip to see war memorials.

“When I found out I had the opportunity to go back and say hi to my fellow soldiers, I knew I had to go,” said Newell Mitchell, a World War II, Korean and Vietnam Veteran and native of Hilton Head Island. “I lost some of my friends, that’s why I jumped at the chance to go to the memorial and give my blessings to them, and say [I’ll] be seeing you someday.”

The trip is an event that Honor Flight has sponsored since 2005, which began when six small planes flew 12 World War II veterans to Washington, D.C.

“It was an honor to have had the chance to sit down with them and hear their stories,” said Cpl. Jervais Brown, a motor transport mechanic with Marine Wing Support Squadron 273. “It was a very humbling experience.”

Aside from visiting the World War II, Korean War, and Vietnam Memorials, the group will also visit the Iwo Jima Memorial, the Air Force Memorial and the Women in Military Service for America Memorial.

“The sacrifices made by the greatest generation basically saved the world,” said retired Air Force Col. Ed Wexler, the chairman of Honor Flight Savannah. “All of these vets contributed to the preservation of the great nation we live in today. For their great actions, this is just our small way of saying thank you.”

For more information visit www.honorflight.org.