Four local Vietnam veterans with family ties recently travel on the Great River Honor Flight out of Quincy, Illinois for a once-in-a-lifetime trip to visit monuments in Washington D.C
Raymond Lynn, Marvin Jennings, (both from Frankford, Missouri) Wayne Lynn and Dale Stewart (both from Vandalia, Missouri, and their four guardians (three sons) Eddie Lynn (New London, Missouri), Scott Jennings (Forsyth, Missouri), Shane Stewart (Columbia, Missouri), and Roy Lynn (brother to Wayne), (Vandalia) arrived at 12:45 a.m. at John Wood Community College in Quincy, Illinois to start their day with breakfast served by the American Red Cross.
Following a guardian briefing and bus loading the entire group of 32 Veterans along with their guardians and the Honor Flight Committee were soon in route to the St. Louis airport flying Southwest Airlines to Baltimore so they could begin their day of visiting the Memorials and Arlington National Cemetery. These veterans represented the states of Missouri, Illinois, and Iowa.
Though mostly WWII veterans and Korean War veteras are the typical passengers on the Honor Flights, exceptions are made at times for Vietnam veterans who have serious health issues which is the case of how these four veterans made the trip.
Last Fall, a letter was sent to the Honor Flight committee about Raymond Lynn’s diagnosis of cancer and that he had always dreamed of making this trip with his two cousins, Marvin and Wayne, as well as his friend Dale. So applications were filled out with a special request that his be honored.
With a 50/50 chance of this wish becoming a reality, the group was notified in April 2014 that they had been accepted and would be on the June Honor Flight 2014. Those associated with this effort said that “God does answer prayers.”
The Honor Flight, upon arrival at the St. Louis Airport, at 4:30 a.m., in the morning were welcomed with everyone clapping and at Baltimore Airport in Washington the 32 local Veterans (one WWII Veteran, 26 Korean Veterans, and eight Vietnam Veterans) along with 24 guardians, a medical doctor, and two members of the Honor Flight Committee were greeted by military members in uniform, a former Honor Flight group, and people saying “thank you.” Every was clapping, cheering, and waving American flags. It was a very warm, surprising welcome for all 25 Honor Flight attendees that morning.
Read the rest of the story in our July 2, 2014 issue or purchase an electronic edition at http://www.vandalialeader.com/?page_id=33