WWII veteran takes Honor Flight to nation's capital


As First Coast families celebrated Independence Day, a Cypress Village resident was reliving new patriotic memories made on a recent Honor Flight to Washington, D.C.

World War II veteran Herb Seubert, 99, had an opportunity to visit the nation’s war memorials and connect with other heroes through the Honor Flight program, which provides veterans with free trips to the capital. Seubert was one of 24 veterans to participate in his Honor Flight, which included veterans from World War II, Korea and Vietnam.

Accompanied by his daughter – who flew to Jacksonville from North Carolina to accompany her father – Seubert and his fellow heroes participated in a roll call at the airport in Orlando, where the group departed to the cheers of hundreds of grateful Americans. They were greeted in Baltimore with similar fanfare along with a police escort to the capital, where the veterans viewed the memorials and relived old memories.


The greatest generation

Seubert, who grew up during the Depression, recalls reading in Life magazine in 1939 about a cadet flying program and a military career that was paying $75 a month with room and board – good pay at that time. In 1940, he reported to flight school and when the United States entered World War II, he was among the first ferrying group to transport equipment to support the Flying Tigers in China.

Seubert stayed in the military through World War II and the Korean War and later became a meteorologist. Yet despite his personal involvement in those two wars, it was the Vietnam Veterans Memorial that made the biggest impression on him during his Honor Flight to Washington, DC.

“The wall went on for what seemed like forever,” Seubert said. “It made you realize the cost of war and human life.”

Seubert credits his time in the military with introducing him to his wife. Flying to Nashville to pick up a B25, Seubert had a layover due to flight rules that prevented him from flying again that day. It was during that layover that he met his future bride, with whom he would share 71 years of marriage.

As he prepares to celebrate his 100th birthday in August, Seubert expresses nothing but gratitude to the United States of America.

“I was lucky to have been born in this country, in the 20th century, with parents that gave me the right values in life and worked very hard to get me off to a good start,” he said. “(America) is the greatest country the world has ever seen.”