CLEARWATER (FOX 13) - More than 70 veterans boarded a plane for what some are calling the trip of a lifetime Thursday. Dozens of retired service members arrived early for the first of four honor flights scheduled for West Central Florida this year.
Friends, relatives and volunteers clapped and cheered for those making the trip from St. Pete Clearwater International Airport to Washington D.C.
"I'm just so excited," offered Sam D'Amico, who served aboard a destroyer in the Atlantic during World War II. "It's once in a lifetime, and I'm looking forward to it so, so badly."
The one-day journey includes stops at the Vietnam War Memorial and a visit to Arlington
"It's something that you think about all the time and never know when you're going to get there," offered veteran Evie Jerger. "I was there once, but it was before they put in the memorial there."
The veterans are scheduled to return to St. Pete Clearwater International Airport Thursday evening.