World War II vets take trip back in time
LOUISVILLE, KY. (WDRB)--Some Kentucky World War II veterans are about to take a trip back in time. On Thursday, they'll spend the day reliving an important part of our country's history.
It's all part of Honor Flight, a trip that takes the veterans to Washington, D.C. to visit several memorials and monuments all created to honor their service.
"Well, I went in of course as a private," says Charles Herd, World War II veteran.
91 Herd is one of the nations few remaining World War II veterans.
"We were at sea for about 6 hours and our ship got hit by another ship and it turned us around and sent us back," says Herd.
But a mishap at sea delayed Herd's D-Day experience. Herd says, "And when we came back in the dock people were waving Welcome home, welcome home, welcome home! And we were waving right back to 'em, glad to be home!"
Herd eventually went into combat and even survived a deadly attack when enemy planes dropped bombs on his unit, and he was hit with shrapnel.
"And I caught a couple of 'em, one in the back, which was not severe and one in the foot which knocked me out."
It has been nearly 70 years since the war ended...but Herd still has lots of memories and mementoes.
"I saw a whale of a lot of German prisoners."
Including a water painting given to him by a German prisoner of war. The painting is even signed and dated. "And I gave him a pack of cigarettes and said thanks and brought the picture home."
Herd is now one of nearly 30 veterans scheduled to take flight down memory lane on Thursday morning.
"I think it's a magnificent contribution on the part of the people who organized it."
The veterans are heading to the nation's capital on Honor Flight. The day-long trip will include visits to the World War II Memorial, The Korean War Veterans Memorial and the Iwo Jima Monument.
"I'm excited about it to get to see the monument in Washington...which I haven't seen. and of course as we were saying earlier to meet some other guys of my vintage," says Herd.
The trip is free for all of the veterans. They're each assigned a personal assistant for the day-long event. During the trip, veterans will also meet with Kentucky Senator Mitch McConnell and Congressman John Yarmuth.
The flight is scheduled to leave on Thursday morning at around 7:30 and will return that evening.
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