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Honor Flight San Diego celebrates veterans at World War II ending celebration

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Posted at 6:16 PM, Aug 13, 2023

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — Honor Flight San Diego honored World War II veterans, as well as vets from the Korean and Vietnam wars, at a ceremony at Liberty Station Sunday.

Hundreds of people attended the celebration commemorating the end of World War II. Veterans told ABC 10 News they enjoyed being around each other while remembering their service together.

"We all have something in common," Albert Breland, a Vietnam War veteran, said. "There's nothing like being with veterans."

Honor Flight San Diego takes veterans on trips to Washington, D.C., to see memorials commemorating their service.

But on Sunday, the organization has numerous veterans in the same room, celebrating the end of World War II.

That means honoring people like 102-year-old World War II vet Max Gurney.

"I'm here for the ones who didn't come back," he says. Gurney took an honor flight to Washington, D.C. too. He's happy to be at Liberty Station to share and listen to stories.

"I feel very close to them," he added.

From a different generation and a different war, Rick Mcilmoil drove down to San Diego from Los Angeles with a newspaper. The Vietnam vet showed off his 1945 newspaper from the night the U.S. declared World War II over. While it's dated long before his service began, the series of torn sheets connect him further to vets before him.

"It's fun seeing everyone else who has walked in my shoes," he said.

Though it's the sacrifice and dedication to their country that ties them all together, it's the conversations that make days like Sunday special.

"I like to hear them talking. Everyone has an interesting story," Gurney added.

The next Honor Flight trip leaving San Diego for Washington, D.C., is scheduled to leave at the end of September.

Honor Flight is also collecting letters and cards for the 90 war veterans who are going on that trip.
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