Honor Flight takes off in recognition of POW/MIA

FORT MYERS, Fla. – For 65 local veterans, seeing the monuments in Washington D.C. meant more to them than they could ever imagine.

“It’s hard to put into words what it means because i hadn’t really thought i did anything different than anybody else,” Navy veteran Larry Wright said.

“I hadn’t been there for about 40 years in Washington and a lot of the stuff I hadn’t seen, I hadn’t been there,” Navy veteran Buddie Salsbury said.

The group took off bright and early Saturday morning to the nation’s capital. This Collier County Honor Flight is the first to fly in remembrance of the 83,000 service members still missing in action.

For retired seaman Fred Gomez, who is 100 years old, this is what he’s been waiting for.

“I really want to see the unknown soldiers graves. I’ve wanted to see this for the longest time and now I am going to have my opportunity and have my dream come true,” Gomez said.

Two fallen heroes were honored on this flight. A flag and placard was given to their family in a private ceremony as they returned.

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