World War II veterans visit national memorial built in their hon - KLTV.com-Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville, Texas | ETX News

World War II veterans visit national memorial built in their honor

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WASHINGTON, D.C. (KLTV) -

Thirty East Texas World War II veterans are on the trip of a lifetime.

Our Joe Terrell is traveling with the veterans as part of the Brookshire's Heroes Flight and tonight he shows us the reception our men and women got earlier today as the got their first look at the memorial built just for them.

It is Friday and we are at the WWII Memorial.  The scene here is exactly what we see everywhere.  Our East Texas heroes are virtual rock stars. 

Spontaneous reception lines form everywhere we go.

School children on end of year trips stop whatever they are doing and break into applause for our East Texas heroes. 

And the photos never stop.  Like handling a Hollywood star, part of our jobs as volunteers on this trip is to just keep things moving. 

On the first day of our trip, the guys didn't quite know how to handle their fame. 

But they're getting used to it.

At the World War II Memorial built in their honor, it is time to assemble for a group photo and a surprise visit from a color guard with members of each branch of service. 

So many memorable moments for them-- but the best memory for some--for many-- is knowing they will be remembered.  This unexpected outpouring of respect from these young people--everywhere we go--it just means so much.  

"That's what I'll remember," says Joe Hogue of Overton. "I have 3 letters these kids gave me thanking us for what we did. And you can't beat that." 

And of course we can give them that every day. Whether we see them in Washington, D.C. or right at home in East Texas.

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