Honor Flight Returns To Fargo After Whirlwind Last Day in Washington, D.C.

WASHINGTON, D.C. (KVRR) — The Veterans are back home after another honor flight that took them on a whirlwind tour of monuments and history in our nation’s capital.

The final day focused on some impressive U.S. history, and the unbreakable bond that ties these veterans together.

A rare treat. The National Archives closed Tuesday morning to give Honor Flight veterans a private chance to see original copies of the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution, the founding documents of our nation.

“It’s something special. You kind of keep it to yourself,” said Floyd Burnside, an Army veteran.

Navy vet Richard Carpenter has a unique perspective.

“I taught history for 31 years and I know how important the Constitution is,” said Carpenter.

These documents are paramount to him.

“The constitution is what made America great. We need to follow the constitution.”

Documents like the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution are reminders of these veterans of the values that they served for, fought for, sacrificed for.

“Definitely. Certainly did.”

Harold Wellen says he served at a time when the survival of those documents was in question.

“I served from 1955-58. Kind of trying times at that time.”

After the archives it was onto the U.S. Navy Memorial and museum and a photo with all the Honor Flight’s Navy boys.

“They’re the most brilliant guys that get in the Navy. They pass a lot of tests. Have higher IQ’s. Lost of energy, you know, that sort of thing. You have to be humble!” said Carpenter.

Then to Ft. McHenry, where Francis Scott Key was inspired to write the Star-Spangled Banner.

“Really amazes me that we got to see the place where we fought the British,” said Orville Spiesz, a Navy veteran.

The history is important to keep in mind.

“Everything’s been impressive, what I’ve seen. Humbling to my heart,” said Harold Wallen, a Navy veteran.

But’s it’s also about who the vets are sharing the history with. Their fellow brothers in arms.

“Met some really great guys here,” said Carpenter.

“I woulda never come here on my own. Being with all these people is great. You visit with anyone you think they’re your neighbor for all your life,” said Floyd Burnside, an Army veteran.

And that is just as important as the monuments and the sights for them.

“Just lucky to go on this trip. It’s great!” said Carpenter.

But all trips must come to an end. At least this one ended in style, with a raucous welcome home at Hector International Airport.

“Awesome. I never expected all my friends, my family…yeah,” said Vietnam War veteran Darrel “Swede” Carlson.

Organizers for the honor flight say they start work on October’s flight tomorrow.


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