Alamo Honor Flight
I’m happy to return to Mighty Marine Mom after a long sabbatical. I’m planning many more posts about the US Marine Corps and my experiences as the mother of a Marine. I hope you’ll join me (or rejoin me).
I recently signed up as a volunteer Ambassador at the San Antonio Airport. We provide Texas-style hospitality to those leaving from and arriving to the airport, answering questions (most common: “Where are the bathrooms?”), showing them where they need to be, providing directions to their destination….all in all, whatever help they need.
On my very first shift, I had the privilege of participating in the final Alamo Honor Flight. Honor Flights take World War II veterans to Washington, D.C., to tour the WWII Memorial and other sites (at no cost to the vets). Alamo Honor Flight has operated for four seasons, taking nine groups (with 300+ vets and their escorts) to D.C. Their final flight was August 16. The dwindling number of vets are simply getting too old and frail to make the trip.
As the escorts walked (or wheeled) the vets into the departure area, lots of supporters clapped and cheered. Once through security, over 100 active duty military lined both sides of the concourse, from all four branches. A color guard (complete with snare drum) led the procession down the concourse. As the color guard approached, the active duty troops were called to attention. Let me tell you….seeing two long lines of troops snap to attention is a moving sight.
Many travelers waiting in the concourse (or arriving from other flights) stopped and asked what was going on, and many of them stayed when we told them.
The vets and their escorts spent the weekend in our nation’s capitol, touring the sites. They experienced an equally grandiose welcome home in the baggage claim area when they returned (see the linked article from the San Antonio Express-News).
I’m proud of my Marine son, but equally proud of these brave men (and women) who fought 60+ years ago to preserve our freedom. My father-in-law is one of them (US Navy vet who fought, as it happens, in the Battle of Okinawa). Many thanks to the many veterans of the United States Armed Forces.