On Thursday, September 13th, we departed home base Luray heading to Dayton Ohio, where we attended Captain Johns Bomb Group Reunion (yes, Captain John flew his own airplane to his Bomb Group Reunion), which is really no surprise since he is still one of the most active Angel Flight Pilots in the Country! Many people at the reunion asked John if he was still flying, and his answer was “NO”…… not since Thursday, when we landed at Wright Brothers Field! We had a fantastic four days at the reunion and departed Dayton heading for home on Monday, September 17th (in the remnants of Hurricane Florence)
During our time there, we attended three different dinners, the first being an individual group dinner (Johns 484th Bomb Group), the second being a total Formal Group Banquet….. (this was a Joint Group Reunion that included the 98th, 376th, 451st, 455th, 460th, 461st, 464th, 465th, 484th & 485th Bomb Groups), the third was a farewell dinner which also included all groups. The formal Group Banquet included a 16 piece orchestra….. and they were amazing! We had all had breakfast together each morning and all during the day (and late into the evening) there was a hospitality room open for getting together (what great conversations and comradeship took place there).
On Friday and Sunday, we departed the hotel for the Airforce Museum at Wright Paterson Air Force Base, what an amazing place, especially for these two pilots….. and to top it off, I had a personal tour guide that explained things to me from a first-hand experience…. and that was Captain John! While at the museum on Saturday we all attended a “Presidential Unit Citation Medals Ceremony” in the Carney Auditorium, where all the Veterans of the 15th Airforce Bomb Group Reunion in attendance were personally presented the Presidential Unit Citation Medal by Lt, Gen. C.D. Moore II, USAF, Ret.
On Saturday we had several very interesting veteran speakers to listen to, one being Captain John……. I could sit all day listening to these guys! (I will post a link to their talks as soon as it is available)
We attended a Memorial Service on Sunday morning and the Farewell Dinner on Sunday evening.
I am very honored to have been able to attend this amazing reunion with Captain John….. being around such great American Heros and hearing their stories is something that I will always hold in my memories as priceless, and it certainly reinforces what I have always known……. the freedoms that we all enjoy today have not and do not come free, so lets never forget and lets never take them for granted, and whenever the chance arises, shake the hand of a Veteran!
We would like to say a Big “Thank You for a Job Well Done” to all involved in putting this fantastic reunion together, it was absolutely AMAZING!
Thank You So Much, Captain John, for letting me tag along!
(next years reunion will be held in Dallas Texas)
Following are some photos of this great event, hope you enjoy!
(2 Videos follow the photos as well)
I love this Video…… check it out! I call it….
“It Must Have Been the Jacket”
The following video is of our flight to and from the reunion in Dayton Ohio, our flight home had us in the remnants of Hurricane Florence.