LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — Sunday was a special homecoming for some Las Vegas valley veterans after an experience of a lifetime.
The sounds of bagpipes led the way as the cheering crowd welcomed the heroes back home.
“All the kids were there, which is really nice. They get an appreciation for what veterans do for this country,” said Jerry Gardberg.
Gardberg was one of 22 veterans that went on the Honor Flight to Washington D.C. He served in the Marine Corps during the Vietnam era, and got see the various memorials dedicated to the sacrifices of our service members.
“It was very moving, very personal. And it came to life right in front of you,” he said.
The experience was shared with World War II and Korean War veterans from other branches of the military.
“They’re still up trucking and moving and feel the patriotism too,” Gardberg said.
Organizers of the Honor Flight say it’s this camaraderie that can help veterans open up about their time serving.
“Their families call us up after this and say, 'I don’t know what happened to him, but we can’t shut him up. He’s telling us everything,'” said Phil Krieger, a board member with Honor Flight Southern Nevada.
With that kind of a reception, Gardberg says every veteran should get this chance to be on an Honor Flight.
“To them, it’s really a once in a lifetime opportunity to this. And you need to go and do that, it's important for them,” he said.
If you’re interested in donating or want to help a veteran be a part of the honor flight we have the details available here.