Local veterans given hero’s welcome after D.C. trip

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

SAN DIEGO — Some members of the “greatest generation” returned Sunday to Lindbergh Field and received a hero’s welcome.

Hundreds of San Diegans  greeted more than 80 World War II veterans as they returned from a trip to Washington D.C.

photo[2]The display of patriotism and respect brought many to tears.

“It’s exceptional – I didn’t expect to see so many good, faithful people here in San Diego to turn out for us.  But God bless you all,” said Louis Gerken, a former Army colonel.

On Friday, the vets left on an Honor Flight to visit the World War II Memorial and other monuments.

“The memorials are really something – and they really took good care of us.  Great trip,” said former Navy pilot Kenny Anderson.

Some vets broke through barriers at the memorial when the government shutdown closed all national monuments.  This was the first Honor Flight group to get in the memorial, post-shutdown.

“That was all forgotten.  Everybody was most cooperative.  We’re one nation – and a great one.  And you really felt proud to be an American,” added Navy veteran Frank Wuerfel.