Panhandle area vets visit memorial in Washington, D.C.

About a month ago, the Panhandle honor flight took almost 150 veterans to Washington, D.C. to visit the memorials dedicated to their honor and their service.

For many, it's the first time they've gotten to see these memorials, and for all, the experience is life changing. Pronews Seven's Meredith Keller and Steve Myers. along with our news director, Ryan Hazelwood made the trip too...and will have stories for you all week.

We begin with the panhandle veterans tours of the korean war and the naval memorial.

Beginning in 1950, America was involved in the Korean War. By the war's end 3 years later... approximately 54-thousand americans had given their lives in service to their country.

The Korean War Memorial, dedicated in 1995, is made up of 19 stainless steel statues of a squad on patrol, slightly larger that life. There's a granite curb featuring the names of all 22 countries that defended south korea...and possibly the most haunting figures on the actual faces of fallen service personnel etched into the granite wall overlooking visitors.

Long called, "The Forgotten War", those involved, like Specialist 4th Class James Hash say they'll never forget, but they did what their country asked them to do.

"My month was almost up and I did what they asked."

He added that this trip made him realize their service was appreciated.

"When we landed, I was so touched for us, for this recognition. people applauding and shaking our hands..if you ever get the chance to come, you need to see this.

Not too far away, you can find the U.S. Navy memorial, adjacent to the naval Heritage Center Museum. Home to the Memorial plaza, it's surrounded by the granite sea, and two reflecting pools with 26 different bronze reliefs commemorating events and communities of various sea services.

Off to one side, is the Lone Sailor who is a tribute to all sea personnel.

Cecil McCarnell had 30 years in the Navy and says to this day, the service he provided to his country is still his biggest honor.

"I feel so honored to be a small part in the war over in Japan...I felt so honored."

Art Hulsey had 17 years in the Navy and said paying tribute to his fellow naval personnel and not being forgotten means so much to military personnel.

"That's what every man, not for honor or glory, you don't want to be forgotten."

There are almost daily such gathering of vets from all around the U-S at all the sites dedicated to our military personnel...on this day, The Korean War and Naval Memorial are on the Panhandle honor flight's agenda...with dozens being represented for their service.

"My America is Texas, is really expands my feelings about my country very proud...they want to be her much longer...and just don't forget.

We'll also visit the World War II, Vietnam and Marines memorials, along with Arlington National Cemetery as we finish out the Panhandle Honor flight Tour.