Honor Flight Of Middle Tennessee Takes Veterans To Washington D.C.
AEDC (Arnold AFB) Commander, Col. Raymond Toth, Coffee County Mayor David Pennington and Manchester Mayor Lonnie Norman were some of the local officials along with local National Guard officers including two Tennessee National Guard generals seeing the veterans off early Saturday morning (2:45-3:45 a.m.) in Winchester, Tullahoma and Manchester.
Local police and sheriff’s departments from Coffee and Franklin counties escorted the veterans chartered bus along with National Guard vehicles and the American Legion (motorcycle) riders.
The veterans got to meet Senators Bob & Elizabeth Dole at the World War II Memorial. They also talked with veterans from eight other Honor Flights from across the United States at the World War II Memorial.
After a short lunch break they visited the Korean War Memorial, and then it was on to Arlington National Cemetery.
Manchester Coffee County High School graduate, Army Major Paul Sipe and his wife Jessica also from Manchester, greeted the group at Arlington National Cemetery where the veterans observed the Changing of the Guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldiers.
Following that the group drove by the Marine Corps Iwo Jima Memorial the Air Force Memorial and the Pentagon.
The bus then dropped the veterans off in Manchester, Tullahoma and Winchester between 10-11 p.m.
The Honor Flight of Middle Tennessee is part of the national Honor Flight network. The group’s goal is take all local World War II and Korean War veterans who have not seen their war memorials to Washington D.C. The trip is free to qualified veterans.
Planning and fundraising is currently under way for a fall Honor Flight from Middle Tennessee. Each flight costs around $20,000. Special thanks to all who donated to make this weekend’s flight happen.
Special thanks also to Mr. and Mrs. Daryl Doney owners of Middle Tennessee Respiratory of Decherd Tenn. for providing the wheel chairs for each Honor Flight.