Cartwright, other veterans tour Washington D.C., visit war memorials
The Screaming Eagle Honor Flight left Nashville on May 13 with Butler County Veteran Jim Cartwright on board. Cartwright joined 20-plus veterans on the flight along with long-time friend and former Butler Countian Harold Cortland Givens.
The group left Clarksville, Tennesse around 4:15 a.m. with a motorcycle escort to the Nashville Airport.
"We were welcomed by various groups at every stop and transition of our trip. People cheered, held signs, shook our hands, and said thank you," said Cartwright. "We were given a water salute as well."
The day was organized to take them to the nation's Capitol, to view the memorials built in their honor, and to those who never came back. The group visited the World War II Monument, Vietnam Wall, Korean War Veterans Memorial, Iwo Jima Memorial, and the Lincoln Monument, to name just a few.
Upon landing in Washington, they were once again greeted by crowds of active duty Army, Navy, Marines and Air Force members, scouting groups, Jr. ROTC groups, and volunteer greeters waving flags and holding signs.
The group was greeted by former Kansas senator, presidential candidate, Senate Majority Leader, and WWII veteran Bob Dole at the WWII Memorial. Dole, 93, spends many of his Saturdays at the monument he was instrumental in making a reality. There, volunteers in WWII regalia warmly welcomed the veterans.
Their final stop of the day was the Arlington National Cemetery, where they witnessed the somber Changing of the Guard Ceremony at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.