Minnesota veterans made a special trip this weekend to the Nation’s Capitol. The Twin Cities Honor Flight organization took their semi-annual flight on Saturday, September 30th to Washington D.C. where veterans were able to visit memorials honoring sacrifices made by military personnel.
Seventy five men and women who served in either World War II or the Korean War participated in the flight. Marvin Keogh, a Korean army veteran, said, “I’ve never been to D.C. so this is very exciting.”
The trip starts at Minneapolis-Saint Paul Airport as the plane leaves at six A.M., and lands in the Capitol around nine A.M. Senator Al Franken awaited veterans as they deplaned to welcome them to D.C. One veteran was greeted with “Thanks for saving the world” from Franken.”
After deplaning, the group typically makes their first stop at the Iwo Jima memorial, but on this trip it was under construction. The Women’s Memorial was moved up to the first stop. After the Women’s Memorial, the group then stopped at the Air Force Memorial where they enjoyed lunch. Following the Air Force Memorial, the flight went on a brief driving tour of D.C., driving by places like the National Archives, the Federal Reserve, the White House, and the Smithsonian Museum.
They next stop at the World War II Memorial, where vets are given time to take plenty of pictures, and take a group photo. They then travel to the Korean Memorial, the Lincoln Memorial, and the Vietnam Memorial, before finally capping their day off at the Tomb of the unknown soldier in Arlington Cemetery, where the watch the Changing of the Guard.
Keogh says that he was most looking forward to witnessing the Changing of the Guard.
After the Changing of the Guard, the Honor Flight crew heads to dinner and then boards a flight home. The flight landed in Minneapolis around ten P.M.
The Twin Cities Honor Flight makes two trips a year, one in the Fall and one in the Spring, with 75 veterans on each flight. Most of the veterans on these flights are World War II and Korean War veterans.