Leo McBride and daughter Leann Rosenmiller thoroughly enjoyed being a part of Great Rivers Honor Flight No. 42 originating at Quincy, Illinois.
It was noted that Saturday, May 13 was the exact day the Vietnam War ended 42 years ago. Of the 31 on the tour, 29 were Vietnam veterans. Leo was one of the two Korean veterans.
The flight from St. Louis flew into Baltimore, Maryland where they received a water salute and rousing greeting as the veterans proceeded to their awaiting bus.
Due to the good weather, wonderful scheduling, and their excellent black leather clad park service motorcycle escort, they were able to see more sites than most groups get to experience. The motorcycle policemen “parted the sea of traffic.” They traveled down streets on the wrong side, cruised through red traffic lights, went the wrong way on one way streets, etc.
The group missed Korean Veteran Vic Davis, who was scheduled to be on the flight but was instead “lain to rest” on Saturday at noon. Vic was in the Air Police, stationed on Ellsworth Air Force base in South Dakota. Information about his service was declassified in 1993 revealing he was guarding the atomic bomb.
At every place they went, there were groups waiting to shake hands and thank them. They especially appreciated the sincerity and respect shown by the school groups.
The groups home-bound plane was delayed resulting in cancellation of motorcycle groups who were waiting in many places to escort the bus to Quincy. A big thank you to all who were awaiting.
Leo relates it is a once-in-a-lifetime experience that every eligible veteran should have. The family is pondering a fundraising event so that future flights can be financed.
from Carolyn McBride