Military heroes take to the skies in vintage biplane from the 40’s
(CBS) – On this Memorial Day weekend, a group of heroes will take to the skies in a vintage biplane from 1940 in Lakeville, Minnesota. The Dream Flights pay tribute to military veterans from Vietnam, Korea and World War II, CBS News’ Jericka Duncan reports.
Darryl Fisher is on a mission. Armed with a small squadron of World War II-era biplanes, his orders come not from a commanding officer, but from within.
“We developed a mission, and that is to give back to those who have given, and we’ve gone out with the airplane and given back to a generation that has done so much for us,” Fisher said.
Fisher runs the Ageless Aviation Dreams Foundation, which organizes free rides to our nation’s veterans.
John Miller was on a Navy destroyer during the Korea conflict.
“I’ve been waiting 80 years for this flight,” Miller said. “It’s fantastic.”
Bud Farrell served in World War II.
“This makes me think about the crew of 11 men. I think of them every day, but now all but one are gone,” Farrell said. “It means something to remember them.”
Fisher also invites widows of veterans to take flight.
A third generation aviator from Washington state, Fisher began the foundation in 2001.
“We are 100 percent volunteer-driven, and we get paid in satisfaction, and I say many, many times we’re overpaid because the joy, the connection that we get with people is priceless,” Fisher said.
On Memorial Day in Lakeville, Minnesota, 95-year-old Bob Campbell will be Fisher’s 1,000th flier.
“It’s a dream to me,” Campbell said.
Campbell received the Distinguished Flying Cross as a B-17 bomber pilot during World War II, and he can’t wait until Monday.
“Like a 23-year-old kid when I went in; I love flying,” Campbell said. “I’ve always loved flying. Flying has been my dream.”
On Thursday, Fisher’s team of flying aces were in Grand Island, Nebraska, where World War II Army radio mechanic Glen Hutton became a dream flier.
Fisher is giving “the greatest generation” a chance to turn back the clock on Father Time.
Call him a hero to our nation’s heroes.