Bill Williams called it "Operation Airlift." The organizer of the Heartland Honor Flights hosted five trips to Washington, D.C. in 2008. And this past week, Williams and many volunteers took flights 6 & 7 as the remaining 750 World War II veterans to D.C. on Thursday and Friday.
The Friday group of 375 Nebraska veterans was greeted with cheers and handshakes at Washington's Dulles Airport. From there the Vets were taken to see the World War II Memorial and they say it was important they got to experience the memorial for themselves, Gardie Beavers of Carleton, Nebraska said, "Because all us World
War II veterans are dying off and if we don't be seein' this stuff pretty soon we aren't going to be able to see it." Archie Chapman of Geneva added, "I've been very proud of my service in the United States Navy and this has been a fulfillment of the whole thing really."
In total, 1,500 Nebraska veterans were able to take the trip to Washington over the past year. And they have scheduled a reunion for the Heartland Honor Flight veterans and volunteers that will take place on May 24th in Omaha.