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New Mexico State University

New Mexico State University

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NMSU Army and Air Force ROTC to send off local Honor Flight

More than 40 World War II, Korean and Vietnam War veterans from southern New Mexico and El Paso will travel to Washington, D.C., after the New Mexico State University Army and Air Force ROTC ceremoniously sends them off at 6 a.m. Monday, Oct. 5, from the north side of the Pan American Center.

?This small service we provide to them is the least we can do for the service and sacrifices they made for us,? said Lt. Col. Jeremiah Klomp, NMSU Air Force ROTC commander and professor of aerospace studies in the College of Arts and Sciences.

Prior to their departure, Army and Air Force ROTC cadets will assist veterans with loading their luggage on the bus. Cadets, in dress uniform, will then form the ceremonial saber arch, which veterans and their guardians will walk under as they board the bus.

A line of cadets will salute the departing bus, which will then transport the veterans to El Paso International Airport.

?This is a great chance for the community to honor the heroes of yesterday, and pass the torch to the next generation,? Lt. Col. Klomp said. ? At the same time, it is an incredible opportunity for the students, cadets and community to learn more about our military heritage.?

The veterans and their guardians will spend two nights in Washington, D.C., where they will visit several memorials and attend a dinner. They will have the opportunity to see the World War II Memorial, the Lincoln Memorial and the Korean and Vietnam War memorials on the two-mile stretch of the National Mall. The group will also visit the Arlington National Cemetery, the Marine Corps War Memorial and the Women in Military Service for America Memorial.

They will return to Las Cruces Wednesday evening, Oct. 7.

Since 2008, 381 veterans have participated in the Honor Flight of Southern New Mexico and wear the Honor Flight Yellow Jacket.

For more information on the Honor Flight of Southern New Mexico, visit www.honorflightnm.com. For more information on the NMSU ROTC Honor Flight send-off, contact Lt. Col. Klomp at 575-646-2136 or jklomp@nmsu.edu.