SIOUX CITY, Iowa (KCAU) – A Korean war veteran, Alfred Hauck says, “It’s more meaningful than if you read about it in the newspaper. I mean, to actually see it!”
This week, 83 veterans from the greater Siouxland area experienced their “Last Flight with Honor”, a trip to Washington D.C. for the day touring war memorials.
“There was so much to see and the buildings are so big,” said Hauk.
President and director of the honor flight, Aaron Van Beek says, “When they were in the service they had their different assignments and this was kind of their assignment. We’re going to go out to D.C. and we’re going to see everything and then we’re going to get you back home.”
But for one 93-year-old veteran, the getting home part was another battle in itself.
Hauck broke his femur boarding the plane back to Siouxland. Causing him to not only miss his flight but his hero’s welcome home.
However, here in Siouxland, no solider is left behind. The community gathering with signs and flowers honoring Alfred with his own personal welcoming committee.
Hauck said, “Oh it’s such a warm feeling”
“For him to be able to complete that discharge is quite something for us to be a part of and give him today. We don’t want to leave and veteran behind in that regard,” said Van Beek.
Dozens of strangers sacrificing just a little bit of time out of their day to honor a man who has sacrificed so much for our country.
Hauck says, “I know I’ll remember it for a long time. For the rest of my days.”
Medical Coordinator for Midwest honor flight, Chris Van Beek says, “He was a trooper. His spirits were always up. He absolutely was a delight to take care of. Shared a lot of good stories and that’s what it’s about. Getting our veterans to tell their story and passing their legacy on.”
And the story of this day will certainly be one Alfred will continue to share for many days to come.
“I might even continue to talk about it in my sleep!” says Hauck.