Three planeloads of Nebraska Vietnam veterans flew to Washington, D.C. today on a special Combat Veterans Honor Flight.
The planes carried more than 500 veterans from nearly 200 Nebraska communities for the quick, one-day trip.
“I think this is going to be a very emotional experience for these combat veterans,” Patriotic Production’s Bill Williams, who organized the trip, tells Nebraska Radio Network affiliate KFAB. “We are honored to step up and make this happen for them. It is going to be a wonderful event that we are all going to remember.”
The veterans got an early wake-up call this morning after getting a pre-flight dinner Sunday evening at the Embassy Suites in La Vista.
The veterans boarded the three planes at Eppley Airfield in Omaha.
The day has been jammed with events so the veterans can make the most of their time at the nation’s capital. Trips have been made to the Vietnam Wall, the Lincoln Memorial, and the Korea War Memorial.
Veterans received a bus tour of D.C. before heading to the World War II Memorial and Iowa Jima; then to Arlington National Cemetery, where they observed the changing of the guard at the Tomb of the Unknowns. The veterans will also visit the Air Force Memorial.
Buses will take the veterans back to Reagan National Airport this evening for the flights back to Eppley.
The public is invited to come to the airport between 9 and 10 o’clock tonight to welcome the veterans home.