SAN DIEGO -- Hundreds gathered at the San Diego International Airport to greet 64 veterans returning from Washington D.C.
Honor Flight San Diego is a non-profit organization that takes veterans from San Diego County on a three-day trip to the nation's capital. There, they visit memorials that honor their service and sacrifice.
Veterans on this trip had served in World War II, the Vietnam War and the Korean War. The oldest on board was 97 years old.
For many, it was their first time visiting Washington D.C.
“To see them have those tears is priceless," Honor Flight volunteer Ruben Chato told FOX 5.
The crowd cheered as the veterans walked through the terminal. For many, it was a welcome they never received.
“It’s a welcome that didn’t come to us when we came back from Vietnam. We just walked off an airplane and we walked home," said Lt. Col. George Caruana. "When you see a grown man cry you know he’s touched to his soul."
Honor Flight organizers said this was the first time they did not raise enough money to charter a private plane for the trip. They hope they can raise enough money for the upcoming trip in May.
Learn more about supporting Honor Flight San Diego here.