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Veterans prepare for "Honor Flight" to DC

Posted at 12:00 AM, Apr 16, 2016
and last updated 2016-04-16 00:00:36-04

80 World War II veterans and two Korean War veterans are going on the trip of a lifetime Saturday.

The group will fly to Washington DC with Honor Flight of Southeast Florida. The organization takes military veterans on a one-day trip to memorials in Washington DC which commemorate their contributions to the country.

NewsChannel 5 caught up with two men living in Broken Sound in Boca Raton who will be on the trip.

Mickey Gotlin joined the Army Air Corps out of high school in 1944. He said he spent time in Europe training on B-29s.

He said he’s been to Washington DC a handful of times, but is looking forward to visiting the sites with a group of people who have a shared experience.

“We had something in common and the camaraderie was really, really terrific,” Gotlin said referring to his days in the Air Corps.

His good friend Len Wolfer will be his guardian on the trip. Wolfer served in the Army Reserves. He said he’s looking forward to seeing history come alive.

“They’re going to have a different view than if you’re just going there and sightseeing,” he pointed out.

Wolfer started a non-profit in honor of his son who was killed in Iraq in 2008. The Major Stuart Adam Wolfer Institute works with Stars for our Troops to collect old American flags. They separate each star from the flag and send them to active and retired military members.

Tomorrow, Wolfer will give a star to every veteran participating in the Honor Flight.

The Institute also collects used cell phones which can be redeemed for calling cards, which are given to American troops stationed overseas.

The public is invited to welcome the group of WWII and Korean War back to Florida when they return from the Honor Flight trip Saturday night.

Operation Homecoming will take place at Palm Beach International Airport on the second level of Concourse A/B. The flight is scheduled to land at 8:20 p.m. but organizers encourage you to arrive early.