CHICAGO, Ill. (NBC) – On Wednesday, the first all-female veteran group is making a historic honor flight from Chicago to Washington D.C.
Departing Wednesday morning from Midway International Airport, 93 veterans began their round-trip honor flight to visit the national memorials in Washington.
The flight is part of “Operation HerStory,” which was established to honor women veterans for their service and contributions in the U.S. Armed forces.
Honor Flight Chicago’s inaugural flight was first slated to be held in 2020, but was postponed due to the pandemic.
The group on the flight was made up of two World War II veterans, Seven Korean War veterans and 84 Vietnam War veterans from the Chicago area.
They served in the Army, Coast Guard, Marine Corps, Navy and Air Force.
Among those taking the trip was 99-year old Bette Hortsman, a WWII veteran who served in the U.S. Army Medical Corps as a physical therapist.
Hortsman declared the trip “awesome,” adding that she had been “really looking forward to it, to see the Memorials, especially the Women’s Memorial, of course.
A U.S Navy veteran, Wilverlyn Joye Morris said, “Words cannot express how grateful, how humble all of us are here today. Being together with other women who served in the military.. cause even when we were in the military there weren’t very many of us together at one time. So to have one hundred of us together at one time is totally awesome.”
All the women said it was an honor to be part of the special flight, and expressed gratitude at being recognized for their military service.