Vietnam veterans will board a plane Monday morning to Washington DC, to see memorials honoring their service to the country.
Sunday they gathered for dinner before takeoff.
It was a very emotional evening for them, thinking back on war and seeing friends they haven’t spoken to in decades.
Soldiers came together for dinner Sunday night just before their honor flight.
“I’m very honored.”
Full of tears and emotion Anthony Infante says this trip to see the Vietnam Memorial is something he’s wanted for a long time.
“About a month ago we received a letter saying I was picked for a flight this year.”
Infante is a Vietnam vet who served from 1974 to 1983.
He says talking about what he experienced as a soldier is still very difficult today.
“You try to get things connected with yourself because your family and life after is only for so long.”
These soldiers were not respected coming home from war in the 60s and 70s, but Patriotic Productions says this free trip is a payback that’s long overdue.
“I’m very proud to go on this flight in honor of everyone who served with me.”
About 654 veterans from around Nebraska and Iowa will board a plane to DC to see the memorials dedicated to soldiers.
Some have never been.
“I wanted to see the wall for quite a few years so this gives me the opportunity to go.”
Organizers say the one day trip is healing for the pain many soldiers still deal with today.
“They were not welcomed back in the 60s and 70s, so it’s the welcome home healing that these vets need.”
Through the pain and bittersweet memories this trip may resurface, Infante says it’s the cost of fighting for his country.
“Even till this day we still give all that we can.”