WASHINGTON D.C. — The excitement begins Saturday for veterans on the South Willamette Honor Flight with a packed day full of visiting the monuments and memorials around Washington, D.C.
But there was a lot of excitement and emotions Friday from the veterans as they arrived in D.C.
The group deboarded the plane and a huge contingent of people were on hand to greet them and other Honor Flight people.
Then, people in the airport came over and gave a round of applause to all the veterans as they got off the plane.
Even a couple congressmen were on hand - one former and one current from Oregon.
They were touched by the experience as well.
“It is terrific," said Rep. Earl Blumenaeuer. "I’ve had a chance to be with some of these flights in the past. It’s an inspiration, and they come here to Capitol Hill and they give people the sense of real history.”
“These are the people that gave us our freedom," said former Oregon congressman Greg Walden. "These are the people that made our country what it is. These veterans served in Vietnam and World War II and Korea and other wars. It just puts a lump in your throat to think about what they sacrificed, their families sacrificed, for our country and our way of life.”
Saturday will feature a packed day for the visitors from Oregon, which begins at 6 p.m. Easter Time, which is 3 a.m. Pacific Time.
The group will hit the WWII memorial early. There is one WWII veteran on the trip.
Another landmark will be the American Veterans Disabled for Life Memorial, among other stops this weekend.