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Veterans' Valor: WWII vets reminisce after Honor Air trip
by Angela Spencer
November 09, 2012 05:00 PM | 2018 views | 0 0 comments | 18 18 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Staff / Erin Gray
WWII veteran Bill Rowe spoke to the Roswell Rotary club last Thursday about how thankful he was for the experiences he had during the Honor Air trip in October.
Staff / Erin Gray WWII veteran Bill Rowe spoke to the Roswell Rotary club last Thursday about how thankful he was for the experiences he had during the Honor Air trip in October.
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The Star - Spangled Banner hoisted above Roswell streets sent a crew of World War II veterans out of town for a one-day trip to see the monuments in the nation’s capital last month.

Honor Air, a trip planned and carried out by the Roswell Rotary Club, brings veterans from World War II to Washington , D.C., for a day to see the sights, demonstrations and – most importantly – the memorial honoring the war they all fought in.

“It was just an unbelievable trip,” said veteran Bill Rowe. “I was the first one off of the plane and going down the ramp and into the airport it was unbelievable as to the greeting we got.”

Rowe said other passengers in the airport greeted the men, woman and their Rotary companions, and he even met a squad of soldiers led by a lieutenant.

“I said, ‘Sir, I need to salute you. I was a corporal,’” Rowe said of the interaction. “And he said, ‘Corporal, we just want to welcome you to Washington.’”

This is the sixth year Rotary has been able to plan and carry out this one-day excursion, and through the years and the growth the program has experienced the club has no trouble finding volunteers to help.

“Back in 2008 when we did this first trip as our community service project who would have every thought we’d be standing here today talking about trip number five,” said Rotary Past President Gene Beckham. “And we still got veterans on the list who want to go on trip number six.”

This year, Rotary teamed up with Coldwell Bankers to make the trip a success, and representatives from the bank said they were thankful for the opportunity to be part of something so special.

“The stories that were shared walked you through our greatest generation’s struggles and triumphs,” said Charlotte Sears, president and COO of Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage in Atlanta.

“What a gift for all in the twilight years of these great Americans. It was an honor and a privilege to not only sponsor the Honor Air flight, but to be able to participate and get to know these extraordinary men [and women].”
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