FORT JACKSON, S.C. -- About 100 veterans left Columbia Metropolitan Airport on the morning of May 23 to visit the World War II Memorial in Washington.

The flight was organized by Honor Flight of South Carolina, a donation-based organization that allows World War II veterans to travel on a daylong trip to Washington free of charge.

During their day in the nation's capital the veterans also visited the Korean, Vietnam and Iwo Jima memorials as well as Arlington National Cemetery.

Upon their return, the veterans were welcomed by well-wishers including Brig. Gen. Bryan Roberts, Fort Jackson's commanding general, and Brig. Gen. David MacEwen, Soldier Support Institute commanding general. The 282nd Army Band performed the musical backdrop for the homecoming.

The veterans were accompanied by volunteer guardians medical personnel on the trip.

Honor Flight of South Carolina was founded in 2007, and has since expanded to four groups across the state. In addition to Columbia, flights also depart from Charleston, Myrtle Beach and Simpsonville.

Two more Honor Flights are scheduled for this year.

The dates are set for Sept. 26 and Nov. 7. Veterans who are interested in participating should call 582-8826 or visit