100-year-old Collier County veteran prepares for Honor Flight

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NAPLES, Fla. — A 100-year-old World War II veteran from Collier County will have a brush with his own heroism Saturday.

Retired Navy Seaman 3rd Class Fred Gomez will fly to Washington, D.C., as part of the Collier County Honor Flight. He and four dozen other World War II and Korean War veterans will get to visit the national memorials, the Arlington National Cemetery and other historic sites.

“I really want to see the unknown soldiers’ graves,” Gomez said. “I’ve wanted to see this for the longest time and now I am going to have my opportunity and have my dream come true.”

Gomez anticipates it will be an emotional experience.

“I’ve never been to anything like this in all my life and I’m going to make the best of it,” he said.

The public is invited to wish him and the other veterans well when they return home. Their flight lands at 9:20 p.m. Saturday at Southwest Florida International Airport.


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