WASHINGTON (KGTV) — Eighty years after fighting in World War II, two veterans from San Diego finally had the opportunity to take in the beauty of the memorial dedicated to them in the nation’s capital. One of them told ABC 10News he would have never thought this would be here today when he was fighting for our country in the 1940s.
"Welcome to your memorial," said a spectator at the memorial.
Ed Seffens took in every detail of the memorial made just for World War II heroes like himself.
"I was 17 years old when my mother signed the papers to let me go in. I quit high school to join the Navy," he said.
He didn't turn back.
In fact, he went on to serve in Korea and Vietnam too.
Seffens looked at the memorial in awe, relishing the moment.
"This is so amazing. This whole thing is amazing to me. I've never had anything like this done for me," he said.
He thinks those who served alongside him in the '40s would think the same thing if they saw the memorial today.
"I don't see how they could not feel the same way I do about this place. This is awesome. No other country is as great as ours — ours is the greatest country there ever was," he said.
If you praise Seffens for the bravery he put on for this country and its citizens, he'll give you a humble retort.
"I don't judge myself a hero, Ciara. I'm just a guy who did a job. I'm glad I did it. I'm glad that I lived through it. I'm glad that I'm here right now to see all this," he said.
Seffens wasn't the only World War II veteran enjoying the memorial, Rudy Leiker enjoyed it too.
"I was glad that I got called up because I had a lot of family there - a lot of cousins," he said.
Honor Flight San Diego is searching for any remaining World War II and Korean War veterans to take on an Honor Flight. You can donate to the non-profit here.