Area students to help honor veterans

By The Mercury

Twenty-five Kansas veterans will take part May 21 in the first Kansas Honor Flight trip coordinated by students from Wamego High School.

The veterans from WWII and the Korean War will visit the war memorials erected in Washington to honor their service and sacrifices to our country. 

The four veterans from WWII include:

•Merril “Bud” Bestwick, Manhattan

•Charles “Vince” Fechter, Wamego

•Robert “Bob” Tindell, Topeka

•Dean Horton, Topeka

The five veterans from the Korean War inlcude:

•Lynn Carlin, Topeka

•Mack McChesney, Clay Center

•Doanld “Don” Whitten, Wamego

•Ralph White, Wamego

•Robert Simmer, Wamego

Students from Wamego and Lyndon High Schools have been paired with the veterans to serve as student “guardians” and will assist the veterans on the trip.

During the two-day trip, veterans and students will visit the WWII Memorial, Korean Memorial, and Vietnam Memorial Wall.

In addition, the group will tour Arlington National Cemetery and the Tomb of the Unknown to observe the Changing of the Guard.

The trip is made possible by the newest hub of the Honor Flight Network (www.honorflight .org), Honor Flight Wamego High School, in partnership with Lyndon High School’s Honor Flight Kansas Student Edition.

“The experience will provide a life-changing opportunity for veterans and students alike, allowing our next generation to connect with the ‘Greatest Generation,’” explained Wamego coordinator Shawn Hornung.

Honor Flight Network’s mission is to transport America’s veterans to Washington, D.C. to visit those memorials dedicated to honor their service and sacrifices at no cost to the veteran.

Community members are invited to welcome the group back to Kansas at approximately 6:30 p.m. along Lincoln Street in front of the High School. The Wamego Community Band and representatives from the American Legion will also be on hand.

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