SAN DIEGO — A special ceremony honoring Vietnam veterans took place Wednesday morning in San Diego.

March 29 marks 50 years since the last combat troops left Vietnam. For so many, this very public recognition ceremony is 50 years overdue.

Several people gathered to pay tribute to all Vietnam veterans on board the USS Midway Museum.

FOX 5’s Elizabeth Alvarez was at the ceremony and she spoke to veterans who were being honored for their service.

“I was one of the survivors,” said Willis King, a Vietnam veteran and retired naval aviator. “I flew the helicopter that’s over there in Vietnam. I got to Vietnam in 70-71.”

On Wednesday morning, King said he was thinking about his dear friend Dave Leet who did not make it back from the war.

“We lost him missing in action for 10 years and I still wear his band,” said King. “It is very therapeutic for me to tell his story as well as my own when I’m here on the USS Midway.