In just two months, a group of World War II veterans is scheduled to fly for free to the nation's capital as part of an honor flight. Under the program, the group visits the monument built in their honor for the first time.
It takes about $65,000 to cover all the expenses. That includes travel, meals, and medical staff. For the trip to happen in May, they need about $15,000.
Last November, a group of about 100 WWII veterans received a warm welcome when they arrived at Myrtle Beach International Airport from their honor flight.
Many were overcome with emotion. Joseph Tusa, 92 years old at the time, said he wished this reception could happen everyday. "It's morale building for everyone. Look at all these people, how happy they are, the ones that are helping the children, the amount of children that are learning about us."
Organizers of honor flight for those living on the Grand Strand want to continue taking veterans to Washington, DC.
In all, 16 million fought in WWII and not many are left.
Len McCahill says they are owed the opportunity to see a memorial built for them, "I think one of the real joys of the Honor Flight is seeing those fellas get together with other WWII veterans who, in a lot of cases they didn't know, but were from different services, and they were in it together and just the camaraderie."
McCahill goes on to say since we are now in troubled times, showing appreciation to all veterans is important. "It wasn't just a four year commitment. In some cases, a lot of these veterans were there for five, six years, so it was a long committment, and they gave a lot, and it's good for America to give back to them."
The next Honor Flight is scheduled for May 25.
On Tuesday May 10, there's going to be a golf tournament at True Blue Golf Plantation to raise money for the trip.
Participants can compete individually for $100 or as a group. Sponsorships are also available.
For more information contact Merrill or Nancy Bent at 843-357-4470 or firstname.lastname@example.org.