Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Honor Flight

McStudly got voluntold to do Honor Flight bright and stupid painfully freaking early on a Saturday morning.

If you don't know what honor flight is, here's a small synopsis of what we did that day:

There were several flights arriving at our local airport carrying quite a few war veterans along with their typical plane-load of people. But we weren't there for anyone but the veterans.

At each gate, when the door opened, the normal everyday passengers were the first to deplane. I could tell by many of their faces that they had not-a-clue what was going on as they entered the airport surrounded by lines of men and women in uniform (yes, this happened at every gate where an honor flight was arriving, that day).

Once they cleared out (though some stuck around to see what the hubbub was all about), the veterans began to slowly emerge from the gate, escorted by loved ones and airline staff. And if you weren't paying attention before this point, you most certainly were now!

Roars of applause and cheers greeted them.

The men and women who are currently serving our country were hootin'-n-hollerin' for the men that had gone before them. Shaking their hands. Thanking them for their service.

...and every single one of the veterans were just BEEMING with pride!

I cannot even begin to tell you how hard it was for me to fight back tears. I was standing next to a pregnant woman, the wife of one of McStudly's pals, and even SHE didn't seem to be struggling as much as I was. Call me a sap all you want, but something about that kind of patriotism just gets me every time.

We had an amazing time. It was SO well worth the early morning we'd had. Seriously.

But even better, for me, was the end of the morning. As the men from the Honor Flights boarded their charter bus to DC, escorted by men on Harleys the entire way there...

...all of the men and women that are currently serving sent them off with a proper salute.

It was so beautiful! If you EVER get the chance to be a part of an Honor Flight near you, DO IT! You'll be so glad that you did and you'll never forget it.

PS: Check this guy out. He still fit into his uniform after 20+ years.

You know I had to get a picture with him and McStudly. Look how handsome!