S.C. congressional offices, electric cooperatives back World War II veterans' flight to D.C.

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COLUMBIA — South Carolina’s electric cooperatives and representatives from the state’s congressional delegations are helping some 90 World War II veterans tour monuments in Washington erected in their honor, organizers said Wednesday.

The 20 electrical cooperatives are getting about 60 escorts to help on the so-called Honor Flight from Columbia to the nation’s capital on Sept. 26.

“We have a full flight,” cooperative spokesman Van O’Cain said at an organizational meeting.

The tour visits the memorial dedicated to the veterans of World War II, in addition to the Korean, Vietnam and Iwo Jima memorials. It also stops at Arlington Cemetery and the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.

O’Cain said the group includes a 92-year-old female veteran who served as a nurse in the Coast Guard.

The tour is the latest in the series of flights that have transported more than 2,000 elderly South Carolina veterans to Washington for a daylong tour of the memorials.

Rep. Mick Mulvaney, R-S.C., is escorting a veteran from his district in Rock Hill, O’Cain said.

Each of the six congressional offices and the two Senate offices are sending representatives to help the veterans get on and off their buses and tour monuments, the spokesman said.

Many of the escorts are employees of the cooperatives, O’Cain said.

September’s flight is the second underwritten by the cooperatives. They paid for a similar flight in April with a $60,000 gift, O’Cain said.

The South Carolina Office of Veterans Affairs says there are about 413,000 military veterans in the state.


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