...While Dozens More Wait Their Turn
Morse has christened the effort Honor Flight, and organized support from veterans' groups and local businesses, who chipped in to provide meals and ground transportation for the travelers. The pilots paid the Aero Club rental fees, or flew their own airplanes. "It was the most rewarding thing I've ever done," pilot Ron Smith told AVweb on Tuesday. "When we landed back at Springfield that night, there were 200 people there to greet us, waving flags ... that's when the veterans really got very emotional." Honor Flight already has more than 150 vets on a waiting list to make the trip. And "sadly, time is not on our side," says the group's Web site. Another trip is planned for June 11. "We'll do these trips all summer," Smith said. "As long as we can get pilots to volunteer, we'll do it."