Take a look back at some of the highlights and hear from veterans from Honor Flight Chicago's May 9, 2018 flight. The flight was the second of the season and 84th in the history of Honor Flight Chicago.
Armistice talks were already underway, but it would be a few months before the fighting came to an end. For those few months, McDonnell found himself on the front lines at White Horse Mountain as a Tank Platoon Leader.
“The military is all about discipline,” says Floyd. “I was used to it growing up. When my dad said to do something, we knew better than to ask why.
As it was growing dark, Whitman was forced to navigate by the full moon as he once again attempted to raise help on the radio. The plane was now running low on fuel, and Whitman’s “Mayday!” transmissions were answered.
“I thought we were going to take part in the invasion of Tokyo,” he says. “Then we got notice we had bombed Nagasaki, and a few days later we heard about Hiroshima.
Basic Training was the best thing that ever happened to him in the service. “It wasn’t that I was a wild kid, I just had a lot of wild and goofy things I was doing. The service helped nail me down and straighten me up.”
Practical nursing duties, like making a hospital bed and caring for patients was also part of his training, as well as general maintenance of a surgical unit. Despite having no medical background, Ralph was enthusiastic about his new assignment and says “when you love something, you can learn anything.”
“The winters were very, very cold. Thank God for insulated boots.” Bob and his tent mates took in a young Korean boy who they named “Peanuts.” He would do odd jobs for them and keep their tent clean.
Dale went to Nuremberg, Germany with the 371st Armored Infantry Division. His new world of 201 files and Morning Reports did not really satisfy his creative mind. A buddy suggested that, with his voice and experience, Dale should look into the Armed Forces Network (AFN).
We kept moving forward, and by June we crossed the 38th parallel. We were attacking all the time, and there was a few close calls.
Sergeant DeCicco “distinguished himself . . . serving as a Section Leader in a machine gun platoon, inspired his men through his distinguished leadership and courage while detailed on the outpost line of resistance in support of infantry operations.
John’s ship was on the water during two dangerous hurricanes. The first, Hurricane Hazel, a Category 4, was the deadliest and costliest hurricane of that year.
After preparing the weapon to be fired, they were ordered into a trench and told to close their eyes and cover their faces with their forearms ... Even though they had their eyes closed and forearms over them, Don says the blast was so bright that you could see it right through your arm.
If the dirt roads and mountainous terrain of North Korea weren’t difficult enough for moving men, equipment and supplies in the warm months, when winter set in, they quickly learned that surviving mud, snow, ice and -30 degree temperatures was “the real challenge.”
With only one clip Ed asked “What do I do if I run out of Ammo?” The sarge said “Jump off the train and run like hell!”
Having been raised on a farm taught teamwork from an early age.