SUN CITY CENTER – Honor Flight of West Central Florida, the Retired Officers’ Corporation, JSA Medical Group and Freedom Plaza recently honored 38 World War II veterans physically unable to travel to Washington, D.C., to visit memorials created to honor them.
On Aug. 1, they were treated to breakfast at the Plaza Club, and then taken on a virtual tour of the memorials they would have seen. Afterward they rode trams or golf carts to Freedom Plaza while members of the public, friends and family “welcomed them home,” a reception that normally takes place in airports across the country when Honor Flight honorees return from the nation’s capital. Folks wearing red, white and blue and waving American flags lined American Eagle Boulevard to celebrate the veterans as they rode to the Freedom Plaza Auditorium to watch a patriotic program in celebration of their service.
The event included the Santas Drill Team, which presented the colors for each branch of service; presentation of Honor Flight Challenge Coins by Medal of Honor recipient retired Army Command Sgt. Maj. Gary Littrell; a group photo from retired Navy Rear Admiral Admiral Walter Wittholz; mail call letters from other veterans thanking them for their service; a book about the Washington Mall; and a tote for all their memorabilia.
To learn more about the Honor Flight, visit www.honorflightwcf.org.