Special Ceremony Honors "Grounded" Veterans - KTEN.com - No One Gets You Closer

Special Ceremony Honors "Grounded" Veterans

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ARDMORE, OK -- The Oklahoma Honor Flight program was designed to transport veterans to our nation's capitol to visit the memorials dedicated to their service and sacrifice.

But for those not able to take flight, a special ceremony was held in Ardmore Friday to commemorate them as well.

The directors of the Oklahoma Honor Flight program know the day is fast approaching when World War II veterans will not be able to travel to the memorials established to honor their service.

In order to serve those veterans who are "grounded" Operation 4G was born.

"Operation 4G stands for Giving to the Grounded Greatest Generation," said Senator Frank Simpson.

58 of Ardmore's World War II veterans were honored Friday, each recognized in turn.

Many veterans say it meant a lot to have the company of the young individuals or family at their side.

"I'm proud of what I've done," said Robert Weddle, an Army veteran. "I did it for my family, my flag, and the country."

The family of Tishomingo veteran Harmon Clark traveled from Lake Jackson, Texas to commemorate their veteran.

And for some, the ceremony was an overwhelming reminder of the greatest generation's greatest sacrifice.

"It's good. I just can't talk about it," said Joe Burns, a Navy veteran.

"It was great," said R.A. Lindsey, another Navy veteran. "Of course, we don't talk about it much."

Each veteran was presented with a medal by their patriot youth escort.

Just that small token of thanks brought many in the room to tears.

"I'm just so glad to be here," said Burns. "To see the rest of them."

Operation 4G's website says nearly 400 vets have been honored in similar ceremonies in the past 10 months.