Bob Clendenin Rotary

 

 

Rotary Honor Flight

 
     
 

The vision of Rotary District 6960 Governor Denise Hearn was for the Southwest Florida Rotary Clubs to sponsor an Honor Flight, taking World War Two Veterans to Washington, D.C. to visit the WWII Memorial.  Her vision came to fruition on June 9, 2012 when 55 Veterans and their Rotary Guardians flew from Fort Myers for the one day visit.

 
     

 

We met at the Cultural Center in Port Charlotte at 5:30 a.m.  Bussed to Regional Southwest Airport, we were greeted by well-wishers, Rotarians and other organizations, including members of a quilting guild who presented lap quilts to the Vets.  At the gate, we found airport vendors had laid out a breakfast fast-food buffet with coffee, juice and bottled water.

 
 
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Sherry, Chuck and Bob

 

 
  Our Flight to Reagan took just over two hours.  We were met at the gate by at least 100 people standing, applauding, shaking hands and patting backs.  We understand that seven Honor Flights from around the country visited Washington that day.  
 
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Our Welcome as we taxi to the gate at Reagan

 
 
  At the memorial, many stopped to chat with the Vets, thanking them for their service and listening to their stories.  
 
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The Memorial

 
 
  After lunch we stopped at Arlington National Cemetery and the Tomb of the Unknowns.  
 
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Changing of The Guard

 

 
  At the Marine Corps Memorial, also known as the Iwo Jima Memorial, we ended our tour, returning to the airport for dinner and the flight home.  Arrangements had been made with Florida school children to write thank-you letters to the Vets.  The response was overwhelming, with thousands of letters opened on the flight.  At the gate in Fort Myers that night we were met by bagpipes, TV crews and nearly 200 Rotarians and well-wishers waving flags and cheering.  
 
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Chuck at the Iwo Jima Memorial

 
 
     
Bob Clendenin Rotary