The Coshocton County Beacon April 17, 2019 - Page 5

Local veteran participates in Honor Guard fl ight By Beth Scott Beth Scott | Beacon Local veteran Dale Pfeiff er fl ew on the Honor Flight on Tuesday, April 9 where he was honored as a Vietnam Veteran. COSHOCTON – Last week was a whirlwind of emotions for Coshocton County veteran Dale Pfeiff er. On Tuesday, April 9 at 4 a.m., Pfeiff er, along with 192 others from Ohio, boarded a plane in Columbus for Washington D.C. Pfeiff er served in the United States Navy from 1957 to 1960. While in boot camp, he was a member of the Blue Jackets Choir and traveled with the choir on weekends for the nine weeks he was in boot camp. He was then sent to Olathe, Kansas where he was in training for two years and worked as an electrician in the Navy. After his time spent in Kansas, Pfeiff er was called to duty on the USS Ticonderoga. Pfeiff er served as a guided missile man and every four hours, he and his crew would load missiles on the fl ight deck. He was discharged in 1960 and came home where he found work. After losing his job in 1966, Pfeiff er decided to join the Navy once again and was discharged in 1968. About 11 years ago, Pfeiff er met Joyce on a popular dating website and the two of them married while on a cruise together in 2008. While watching television one night, the two saw a segment about the Honor Flight and Joyce encouraged Dale to sign up. Two and a half years after he initially signed up, Dale received a notice that he had been chosen to participate in the Honor Flight. Dale left for Columbus Monday, April 8 in the after- noon and in the early hours on Tuesday, he boarded the plane at Columbus John Glenn International Airport for Washington D.C. When they arrived at the airport in Columbus, Dale said that the fi re department had come out to show their support and sprayed an arch of water over the bus. He said he and his fellow veterans received the same treatment in Washington D.C. and the ground crew was waving American fl ags. “I was totally overwhelmed when I saw how many people had come to the airport,” said Dale. “I never expected that kind of crowd to be there.” His guardian on the trip was Niki McCoy. “Niki was a real sweetheart, especially after we got to the Vietnam Memorial Wall,” said Dale. “I lost a good friend and his name was on the wall.” Dale was able to see the Marine Corps. Memorial, Arlington National Cemetery and the changing of the guards, John Glenn’s grave, Audie Murphy’s grave, the Korea Memorial, the Air Force Monument, the Women’s Memorial, and of course, the Vietnam Memorial. “It was just one of those things,” he said. “I had walked over and put the fl ag above the names of the eight guys on the wall from the Ticonderoga,” said Dale. Dale said he is happy he was able to go on the trip. He said coming back to Columbus, there were people there to greet them and welcome them home, which was a completely diff erent experience than the treatment he received when he returned from Vietnam. “I’m glad I went,” he said. “I’m glad they honored me to go. I would recommend it to any vet regardless of their military branch.” Free College for Eligible Coshocton County Residents COTC Coshocton Promise Learn more at: 740.622.1408 0038_112118 APRIL 17, 2019 THE BEACON 5