Valley veterans welcomed home from Honor Flight

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Crowds of people lined the procession route through Fresno Yosemite International Airport Wednesday evening.

The 21st Central Valley Honor Flight left Fresno for Washington, D.C. on Monday.

The flight was supposed to take place in April 2020 but was postponed because of the pandemic.

During the two-year delay, 25 veterans who should have been on this flight passed away.

Each of those families received a shadowbox with their loved one's photo and a flag that made the trip to Washington.

Once the flight touched down, the veterans marched through the airport -- a greeting many have waited a lifetime for.

"It's something I never got when I left Vietnam -- none of us got this," said John Linan.

The oldest vet on board was 100-year-old Dr. Gilbert Stocks.

While in D.C., the group of vets visited war memorials and military museums built in the honor of their service and the ones who made the ultimate sacrifice.

"The most important thing there was Arlington Cemetery," said Linan.

"It's overwhelming. Everywhere you look, there's the stones. It's overwhelming," said Stocks.

Both gentlemen had the honor of laying the wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, a sacred task few Americans will ever experience.

If you or a veteran in your life would like to sign up for a future honor flight, visit their website.
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