Honor Flight: Families reconnect in Washington, D.C. - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Honor Flight: Families reconnect in Washington, D.C.

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Ninety veterans are back home in Iowa after an incredible day in Washington, D.C., Tuesday as part of the Eastern Iowa Honor Flight from Cedar Rapids. Ninety veterans are back home in Iowa after an incredible day in Washington, D.C., Tuesday as part of the Eastern Iowa Honor Flight from Cedar Rapids.
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    Ninety veterans are back home in Iowa after an incredible day in Washington, D.C., Tuesday as part of the Eastern Iowa Honor Flight from Cedar Rapids.Ninety veterans are back home in Iowa after an incredible day in Washington, D.C., Tuesday as part of the Eastern Iowa Honor Flight from Cedar Rapids.
    Ninety veterans are back home in Iowa after an incredible day in Washington, D.C., Tuesday as part of the Eastern Iowa Honor Flight from Cedar Rapids.More >>
    Ninety veterans are back home in Iowa after an incredible day in Washington, D.C., Tuesday as part of the Eastern Iowa Honor Flight from Cedar Rapids.More >>
WASHINGTON, D.C. (KWWL) -

Ninety veterans are back home in Iowa after an incredible day in Washington, D.C., Tuesday as part of the Eastern Iowa Honor Flight from Cedar Rapids.

The first stop was the World War II Memorial, where one family was anxiously awaiting the arrival of their veteran, Lyle Swan. They drove all night from Kentucky and Tennessee just to see him arrive, and cheered as he rolled close.

Swan was quite surprised. It took him a second to realize it was his family standing there. 

"Holy cow!" Swan said.

After some hugs and kisses, Swan and all the other veterans on the trip were greeted inside the memorial.

"It's great to be here, especially with my son, his wife, and all the grandchildren," Swan said. "It's a great surprise."

Like many of the veterans on the trip, Swan delighted in sharing old war stories.

"I was in the Navy, and ... this is going to take a while," Swan said.

Swan was stationed at several places around the country before taking off across the Pacific Ocean.

"The sight you get when you leave the sight of land is something else, you know," he said. "It seems like you're in a hole all the time out there in the water when you're seeing nothing but water."

Seeing these memorials built to remember those who served long ago was quite an honor for him and other veterans on this trip, like Robert Guyer.

"This is heart-throbbing," Guyer, a WWII veteran. "It just tears you apart, but I enjoy it. I sure appreciate it."

The trip carried even more meaning for Guyer, since his son just uncovered a long family history of military service.

"Clear back to the Revolutionary War," he said. "My son just picked this back up. I just got a hold of it last night, so there's a lot of stuff he knows that I don't, that I can't tell you about yet."

But he carried pictures of each of those soldiers with him, he said, to make them part of this experience.

Making the day complete was a welcome home celebration, where hundreds cheered the veterans on as they returned to the Eastern Iowa Airport, thanking the vets for their service.

The next honor flight takes off from Waterloo in June. Another flight will leave from Cedar Rapids in September.

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