Area man honors returning veterans

Cathy Decker/Staff reporter
Cliff Anderson hands out WW II flags to all the returning Honor Flight veterans on April 15.

Cliff Anderson, his wife Elaine, both of Joy, and Gillian Tharp of Seaton took a late evening drive to the Quad City airport Wednesday, April 15, to help honor veterans who were returning from a Washington D.C. visit to the WW II Memorial on the Honor Flight.

Cliff passed out WW II flags that say "A Grateful Nation Remembers " to the 96 veterans who returned to Quad City airport that night on the area's second Honor Flight for veterans. "We did this in memory of Elaine's father who passed away last year," said Cliff. Ira "Bud" Adams was a WW II veteran.

Anderson said they arrived at the airport 45 minutes before the flight was scheduled to land and the parking lot at the airport was packed. The plane landed around 10:30 p.m. and veterans started coming through the gate at around 11:15 p.m.

"It was pouring down rain," said Cliff.

He also passed out a few Honor Flight applications.

The Andersons run an antique store in Aledo called Yesterday's Treasures Tomorrow's Antiques. He has applications at the store, located at 217 S. College Ave., Aledo, that he will pass along to any veteran for any future Honor Flights. He said the flights will continue "as long as they can get them funded."

Honor Flight Network is a non-profit organization created solely to honor America's veterans for all their sacrifices. The organization transports the nation's heroes to Washington, D.C. to visit and reflect at their memorials. Top priority is given to the senior veterans - World War II survivors, along with those other veterans who may be terminally ill. The Honor Flights are being given out at no cost to the registered veterans.

Applications are chosen on a first come, first served basis.

For more information on Honor Flights and the local flight from the Quad Cities see the web site www.honorflight.org.

WW II Flag