Pine Belt veterans and family members enjoy Honor Flight - WDAM-TV 7-News, Weather, Sports-Hattiesburg, MS

Pine Belt veterans and family members enjoy Honor Flight

Dozens of Mississippi World War Two veterans visit the National World War Two Memorial in Washington, D.C. Tuesday as part of a Gulf Coast Honor Flight. Dozens of Mississippi World War Two veterans visit the National World War Two Memorial in Washington, D.C. Tuesday as part of a Gulf Coast Honor Flight.

Navy veteran and Laurel resident Douglas Saget was one of 94 World War Two veterans who made the trip from Gulfport to Washington, D.C. Tuesday as part of the third Mississippi Gulf Coast Honor Flight.

The main purpose of the trip was to give veterans like Saget a chance to see the National World War Two Memorial. It opened in 2004 and it honors both the 16 million Americans who served and the 400,000 Americans who died in that war.

"I really appreciate what everybody did to build it, it's one of a kind," said Saget.

We spoke with Saget and his son Don, on Monday, as they prepared for their flight. Don, who was going along his father's guardian, told us then he was honored to make the trip and said Tuesday, it was well worth it.

"It's a great opportunity for us to get up here and see a lot of beautiful things in Washington and to do it together is just fantastic," said Don Saget.

Togetherness was also important for Hattiesburg Army veteran Elbert Hopkins and his son-in-law Toney Griffin. They also made the trip on the Honor Flight.

"It's worth the trip," said Hopkins. "It was very touching too, for me, very touching," he said.

"I've been to the World War Two monument several times," said Griffin. "I was just so excited that I would get a chance to go with him," Griffin said.  

Several sponsors, including major industries, banks and individuals helped make this latest flight possible. And it's something that was very much appreciated by 90-year-old Navy veteran J.B. Stonecypher of Lucedale.

He and his daughter, Mary Kinsey, also made the trip.

"I think it's wonderful that they had that many people willing to do it," said Stonecypher.

"I think it's a very sacrificial thing to do, I think it's a very honorable thing to do," said Kinsey. "And frankly, it comes late in these guys lives, but it's never too late to honor those who serve us," she said.

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