Ageless Aviation Dream Flights Take 8 Veterans Up in War Planes


GRAND ISLAND, Neb. -- Decades after flying home from war, eight World War II and Korean War veterans flew in planes they hadn't been in since war time.

The last time Korean War vet Melvin "Bud" Edwards flew in a war plane, he was on his way home after being wounded by a Chinese hand grenade.

Edwards said, "They flew me back from Tokyo to Hoy. We was there for 3 days and then we went from there to San Francisco and then a couple days later we went from there to Denver. That was the closest air based that they had to get us home."

Sunday he went up in a 1940 Stearman plane, much nicer than what he was used to in Korea.

"It was nice, I mean I was surprised that it rode, as windy as it was, that it rode as smooth as it did, so I was really surprised about that," said Edwards.

This opportunity is given to veterans who live in assisted living facilities because many think they don't have any opportunities anymore according to pilot Darryl Fisher.

"This says, 'Hey, I'm still alive, I'm still valuable.' They get a chance to do something very cool, they get recognized and it puts a spring in their step," said Fisher, who is also President and Founder of the Ageless Aviation Dreams Foundation.

And Fisher wasn't the only pilot on the runway, but Joe Royer hasn't flown a plane like this since 1943, in World War II.

"Oh it was a great flight, great ride! A lot nicer airplanes than we had. It was just a nice ride around the country," said Royer.

Fisher said going up in the air with war heroes like this isn't just providing an experience for them.

He said, "It's very humbling. I feel very blessed. To me it's a privilege to be able to do this and I say that I get more out of it than they do."

Although, the veterans always come down smiling.

"I say it's a time machine kind of because people go up and then they come back and they're 10-15 years younger," said Fisher.

The Ageless Aviation Dreams Foundation has three planes that take veterans on flights around the country. For more details on the foundation, click the link to their website.


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