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WASHINGTON, D.C. — Utah’s Honor Flight veterans were greeted with applause as they entered the National World War II Memorial Saturday morning. Many of them had never even been to Washington before. It was the crowning moment for these veterans, coming at the end of a free, three-day trip to D.C.
As Utah Honor Flight veterans approached the memorial, Grant Woolley was surprised by his grandkids and great-grandchildren.
Inside, he and the other veterans felt a solemn aura.
“Even as you came in the entrance, there’s a different feeling,” Woolley said. “It felt like you left the outside world, and you’re in a very sacred place.”
They stopped at the Utah panel to recognize the 3,600 fighters who gave their lives during World War II.
“It made you realize, the land you live in was preserved for us as a nation and God prepared for us,” Woolley said. “And we in turn must take care of it.”
Woolley was a medic and saw the effects of the war after the fighting on Iwo Jima.
“Many of them burned, many of them lost their limbs,” Woolley said.
Approximately 250 Utah vets have been able to go to Washington, D.C., over the past year. During the next few weeks, 125 more will get the same opportunity.