A group of World War II veterans gathered at the WWII History Center Monday evening before departing on the Honor Flight this morning from Mid Continent Airport in Wichita


A group of World War II veterans gathered at the WWII History Center Monday evening before departing on the Honor Flight this morning from Mid Continent Airport in Wichita.

Among those veterans was El Dorado resident Junior McGoyne.

McGoyne served in the tank corps from 1943 to 1945.

“It’s going to be mighty nice,” McGoyne.

He said it is something he has wanted to do for a while.

In fact, McGoyne started to make the trip once, but never made it off the ground. He and a buddy of his was on their way to Washington, D.C., and his buddy’s plane took off but his was grounded because of a problem with the landing gear and he never made it to D.C. That was in 2004.

He is looking forward to just seeing all of the monuments.

Carl Funk, from Liberty, also is going with the group.

“I just want to see everything,” he said.

He too has never been to D.C.

Funk was a paratrooper from 1942 to 1943 when he was injured and sent home, going to a veterans hospital in Oklahoma.

“I liked to jump though,” he said. “One time I went up four times in a day of training.”

Also joining the group is Ted White from Cottonwood Falls.

“I’ve never been on anything like this before,” he said.

He has never been back east at all.

White was in the Navy from 1944 to 1946, where he served in the engine room.

The fourth veteran in the group is Lee Gipson of Valley Center.

“It looks like it’s going to be some interesting things,” White said. “I was real fortunate to be selected.”

White was a Navy seaman first class, serving from 1944 to 1946.

Joining the group will be El Dorado resident Kevin Pickrell.

During the reception Monday, Loren Anthony also brought out his 1943 Willys Jeep, which was built in Columbus, Ohio, in 1942, and was offering rides to those in
attendance. The jeep’s first service station was in Fort Riley in March 1943. It was used there and for training.

Then at 4:30 this morning the veterans gathered for breakfast at Double Ds before heading to the airport. They will return at 6:45 p.m. Wednesday and a reception for the veterans will be held at 7 p.m. at the airport.