The Herald Bulletin

Afternoon Update


July 13, 2013

Elwood veterans enjoy Honor Flight


Peeper had four children with his first wife, Rachel. After being widowed, he married Barbara, who had two children. They share many grandchildren.

Burchette returned to Delco Remy and spent his whole working life there, retiring in 1985. He and his wife, Theresa, have been married 66 years; they have three sons and three grandchildren.

The day of the Honor Flight "was fabulous," said Burchette. “It made us feel important.” When reminded that they were definitely important, the men shrugged it off.

“We’re just a bunch of old men,” said Scott with a half-smile.

As these veterans see it, they went because they had to, and they did the job they were assigned, despite being scared “all the time.”

Modesty is a common trait among the veterans of the “Greatest Generation," according to Mike Peeper of Elwood, who served as his dad’s guardian on the Honor Flight.

He said, “I was in the company of giants, true heroes.”

Mike, 64, served in Vietnam, but it wasn’t the same. “All we cared about was serving our 13 months and going home.”

The WW II veterans, he said, "threw everything off and went to fight for their country, for something bigger than themselves.”

Honor Flight requirements Veterans must fill out an application and obtain medical permission. The number of flights per year depends on the funds raised. Wheelchairs are provided for those who may tire during the long day, but all flight members must be able to walk down the aisle of the plane and the use stairs on the bus. A family member age 18-67 may be appointed a guardian if he or she applies with the veteran, but spouses are not eligible unless he or she is also a veteran. Applications are available online or by phone contact. World War II veterans will be served first. Veterans of later wars may apply and be put on a waiting list. If they are terminally ill but can still travel, they will be placed as soon as possible. For information: Honor Flight Network Headquarters, Cincinnati: Phone: (513) 277-9626. The Indianapolis chapter can be found at or (317) 559-1600.

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