Patricia and I recently took a trip with friends to see Missouri’s National Veteran’s Memorial Wall.

Eight of us made the trip to Perryville, including Rocky & Susan Howard and Nancy & Paul Garavalia.

Paul is a veteran. He served in Vietnam around the same time I did and was in a combat unit like me. I found it easy to talk to Paul. I hope was easy for him to talk to me. We could relate to one another. You’re not always able to share war stories with people who didn’t serve. It’s difficult for others to understand. You had to be there.

Talking to Paul made the trip worthwhile.

This was actually my second time visiting the Perryville Wall. My first trip was a few years back with my Sunday school class.

We ate breakfast at the same restaurant we had stopped in before.The food and service were both excellent. And so was the conversation.

It’s always special to take a trip with people who share a common bond.

That’s what makes the Honor Flight so special.

Have you heard of it?

Honor Flight is a non-profit organization that flies U.S. military veterans at no cost to Washington D.C. so that they may visit and pay their respects at the various war memorials.

The next Honor Flight will leave Veterans Airport in Marion on the 26th of this month. This will be the eleventh flight out of southern Illinois.

If you’re able, you can head to the airport early in the morning to see them off. Or come back later that same night to celebrate their return.

For some... this is the trip of a lifetime.

Be well. Stay well. Thanks for readin’...

Francis Pass

P.S. – Since its inception in 2005, Honor Flight has flown over 273-thousand veterans to D.C. That’s a whole lot of bonding.