Saturday, July 20, 2013


Day 14: Meeting a Real Life Hero

Saturday was our last day with Dad and we had something very special in store for the day.  We headed up to Chino, CA to the Planes of Fame museum.  This museum houses planes and other amazing artifacts from many generations.
But we were here for one very special plane.  The P-47 Thunderbolt is the plane my husband’s grandfather flew in WWII over Belguim, Germany, and England.  There are only 2 flying left in the world today and the Planes of Fame museum had one.
Isn’t she beautiful?  And can you see the smiles of pride those boys have posing in front of it?

We then were able to tour a B-17.  It is in the middle of restoration currently.  And they had several docents to teach us about it.  We held flak and saw the damage it could make.  And one of the ladies, noticing how interested my son was, invited him to sit in the ball-turret.  He was amazed at how small it was…and that gunners would sit in it for 5-10 hours at a time.
The most amazing part of the day was getting to meet an actual veteran who was a ball-turret gunner.  He flew in 30 missions in WWII and shot down 2 planes before he was hit by flak.  He was injured too much to go back into service and was sent home.  It was humbling to meet him – a true American Hero.
And the time came where we had to say goodbye to this guy.  It was such a great week with him, we loved seeing new places with him and wished he had been able to be on the whole trip with us.  But we will see him in a little over a week.
We were so blessed to stay with family that night.  And were thrilled to see that they had lemon and orange trees in their back yard.  My kids went nuts over picking them and making fresh orange juice and lemonade.  It’s easy to entertain these kids with activities you can’t readily do in Texas!
It was a great way to end our week in California.  We rode roller coasters, swan in the Pacific Ocean, made remote controlled cars, saw Pandas, & tried a shake made of dates while we watched the sunset.   We tasted fresh California oranges, saw Washington D.C. made out of LEGO bricks, toured an aircraft carrier, felt a generated “earthquake”, and met a WWII Hero.  It was an unbelievable week.

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