This Tuesday, the HKS DC alumni community welcomed an Honor Flight. The HKS DC Council extends its thanks to the couple dozen participants who braved the heat to welcome the arriving veterans at the DCA gate and then escort them around the memorials built in their honor.
In 2005, Ohioan Earl Morse, a physician’s assistant and part-time pilot, was concerned by the many WWII veteran patients who were passing on without ever seeing their new memorial. So he filled his own plane with a handful of octogenarians and flew them to DC. He says that when he first hatched the plan he was ready for one intended beneficiary “to say yes or no...but [he] wasn't ready for him to start crying.”
Thus was born the nonprofit Honor Flight program which, now 13 years later, carries veterans, nationally, to the memorials constructed in their honor, free of charge.
This week, things were expectedly emotional as HKS affiliates greeted the veterans, often with a hug and always with a thank you, then listened to their compelling stories, as inspired by their subsequent visits to the WWII memorial, the Korean War memorial and the Vietnam War memorial. The day’s events also allowed for a pit stop at the Lincoln Waffle Shop!
Many thanks to all who contributed – we look forward to the honor of working with you again soon.