Honor Flights are an opportunity to honor and thank the Americans who secured our freedom by bringing them to the nation’s capital to see the memorials that commemorate their service. Since 2005, the Honor Flight Network has helped make it possible for more than 200,000 veterans from all services to visit Washington and other memorial sites from more than 130 locations across the country.

The Flight

A group of 12 World War II veterans recently journeyed from Austin, Texas, to the nation’s capital to join others in remembering the fallen and honoring those who served.

veteran being greeted at the airport
veteran placing a wreath in Washington on Pearl Harbor day
veteran talking with girl scouts

Like all Honor Flights, the veterans represented a tapestry of war experiences, battles and services. They included noncommissioned and commissioned officers; sailors, soldiers and airmen; and those who fought in the Pacific theater and on the European front. This mission was in tribute to the 77th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor.

Flying With Heroes

The honorees, many in their 90s, are accompanied each step of the way by guardians who volunteer to take care of each veteran both on the ground and in the air. One extra special flight to Hawaii even featured celebrity service.

"The Honor's All Mine"

Veterans and their guardians are met by well-wishers, including current service members, who cheer and salute the traveling veterans. Check out these snapshots from some of the many Honor Flights around the country.

"It brought me to tears, all the applause going through the airport in Austin and again here in Washington."

- David Fleming Army Air Corps veteran

army air corps veteran David Fleming

"It brought me to tears, all the applause going through the airport in Austin and again here in Washington."

- David Fleming Army Air Corps veteran

 

The Veterans

This trip to Washington included dinner, a welcome ceremony and visits to several memorials, and culminated with a Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day event at the National World War II Memorial. There, veterans placed wreaths at the memorial’s Freedom Wall and were recognized for their service.

veteran at wreath ceremony in Washington on Pearl Harbor day
veteran posing for photograph
veteran with girl scouts
More About Their Visit

Three-War Hero

From high school dropout to college grad and colonel in the Army — this veteran has no regrets.

Retired Army Col. Frederick Clinton, a veteran of World War II, the Korean War and the Vietnam War, was 14 years old when Pearl Harbor was attacked. Two years later, he dropped out of school, lied about his age and joined the Army. Now in his 90s, he shares his thoughts during a ceremony honoring WWII veterans.

See more snapshots of Honor Flight activities around the country.

To me this is a privilege. It's an honor to be on the Honor Flight. I think they're great people and I hope every vet can have the same experience."

- Buddy Sutton Navy veteran

navy veteran Buddy Sutton

"To me this is a privilege. It's an honor to be on the Honor Flight. I think they're great people and I hope every vet can have the same experience."

- Buddy Sutton Navy veteran

A Final Flight

Retired Air Force Lt. Col. Raymond Schaaf passed away just 10 days after taking flight with Honor Flight Austin to view the National WWII Memorial in Washington. Before he passed, he shared a memory of his first combat mission in the skies over Germany.

With hundreds of World War II veterans dying every day, the Honor Flight Network performs its mission with urgency, flying as many missions as possible each year to honor those who served our nation. Learn more about the network and its programs.

Honor Flight Network
thank you card
thank you poster
inside of thank you card