STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY: Blog en-us (C) STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY (STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) Sun, 09 Jan 2022 19:15:00 GMT Sun, 09 Jan 2022 19:15:00 GMT STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY: Blog 120 94 PUBLISHING PROGRESS REPORT! 12/18/2021 2022 Hard Cover2022 Hard Cover

We are on schedule for the fourth edition of DC PHOTO BOOKS and I had the time to make a few changes and updates.

I was also able to insert a few special moments I had made traveling around the Mall with Honor Flight hubs. In the Arlington Cemetery section of the book, I used this picture from a Stars and Stripes hub in the Arlington Cemetery section and as in the past the photo of Honor Flight Chicago at the WWII Memorial.  I am happy that I had a few trips around the Mall that allowed me an idea of the depth and importance of the Honor Flight experience.

_DSC8689HONOR FLIGHTA Stars and Stripes Veteran was given a special few moments with his nephew. Paula Nelson of Stars and Stripes allowed me along for this unexpected moment which is what Honor Flight is all about.

Jim Fisher gave me a tour of the construction at the Korea Memorial which is due to open in May.  When finished it should feel and look essentially the same with the concentration on the soldiers and the only addition a "Wall of Remembrance": names of the Fallen which will be placed in a circle around the original pool and trees.  

Below are some screenshots of the new edition of DC PHOTO BOOKS book which will be hardcover and 160 pages retailing at $39.95. They will be sold and distributed through DC PHOTO BOOKS which is an interface for my excellent warehouse! Discounts codes will be announced when the books arrive. There is already a sale going on and you can get twenty percent off by typing in "korea" as you fill out the shipping information.  This information goes to directly to my warehouse which ships usually same day.  They can save you money as they know all the tricks to obtain discounts on shipping.



The new Frederick Douglas Memorial Bridge is almost finished. I was able to find a few angles that make it look as finished and am delighted with the image.  It visually pulls together the Southeast neighborhood which is growing at a rapid rate.  In the current version of the book, I had pictures of the Nationals Stadium and some of the older run down buildings in that neighborhood.  With this edition I was able to photograph the Capitol Riverfront area as it is ten years later. Hard to believe!  I even managed to get a photo of the Channel area which used to be an old fish market and run down area and is now a beautiful waterfront with glitzy new buildings and the new marina.


Finally I had a chance to make some images of the new Dwight Eisenhower Memorial across from the Air and Space Museum. Looking forward to seeing proofs of the book next week and hoping I catch all the mistakes which creep into these books. 

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(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) blogs books dc dc photo book flight honor honor flight korea memorial national park service photography travel veteran veterans vietnam washington wwii Sat, 18 Dec 2021 16:07:47 GMT
PROOFING! fpochannelfpochannelScreenshot
We are close to finished and the new images and pages all match up.   The nice thing about the ability to revise these books is the opportunity to watch the city grow and change and in my opinion for the better.  It's been a tumultuous time to live in DC but always interesting. 2022coverwoflaps2022coverwoflaps Screen Shot 2021-12-15 at 10.52.11 AMScreen Shot 2021-12-15 at 10.52.11 AM

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(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) dc digital honor memorial photography proofing tourism travel veteran washington wwii Thu, 16 Dec 2021 01:32:45 GMT

This is a proof for the 2022 or FOURTH edition of the DC PHOTO BOOK which will include new material on Eisenhower, Korea, Arlington, and a some new DC centric images ie: the new @FDMB bridge which segways into the Navy Memorial. For those in the know, it already contains ten page portfolios on the WWII, Korea and Vietnam Memorials. Spreads on the Military Women's Memorial and another ten pages on Arlington Cemetery. It is the only book that contains a spread on the Martin Luther King all the most comprehensive book on Washington, DC and attractions. 

It's 160 pages of American history put together in an elegant hardback edition. The book will retail on as it does now on"" for $39.95 and "discount codes" will be given to those hubs and organizations that ask for them NOW. (

if you are going to be buying books in quantity for Honor Flight Network hubs, it would be helpful to know your projected numbers. I will be giving discounts to those who ask for them SOON and not so many discounts to those who ask for them later.  

...a head's up would be much appreciated.

(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) dc honor memorial photography tgouism travel veteran washington wwii Tue, 14 Dec 2021 05:27:00 GMT

Senator Robert Dole's life was celebrated at the National Cathedral today. President Biden spoke about his thirty year working relationship with Dole.  After the funeral, the motorcade  sped down to the WWII Memorial where Milley, Tom Hanks and Mrs. Dole spoke.


Dave Nichols and I quite literally "missed the bus" to the WWII Memorial  and so we ended up stuck in the Northwest in an amazing traffic jam.  So we decided to make a nice lunch of it on a Friday afternoon and reminisce about Senator Dole and Honor Flight.   Honor Flight was mentioned by almost every speaker at the ceremony so Senator Dole had been spreading the word in powerful places.  He liked making things happen and considered any effort necessary to achieve his goals a pleasure rather than a chore. 

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I grabbed a couple of snaps of Dave Nichols and Carol Harlow.  

(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) dc honor memorial photography travel washington wwii Fri, 10 Dec 2021 22:29:57 GMT
"CALL ME BOB" 20181006-_DSC258720181006-_DSC2587

I never called him Bob.  He was a fellow who saw the world clearly and "made stuff happen" oftentimes not taking credit.  Long after he left the Senate and ran for the Presidency, laws would pass and calls would be made.... I took a certain pride in knowing the guy who made that stuff happen.  He took great pleasure in progress and worked for change in agriculture, education and healthcare....and of course veterans benefits.  I got to know him better when I did the book on the WWII Memorial in 2002-2004.  He supported my being on the construction site and wrote the introduction to the book.  He then encouraged my participation in Honor Flight and from then on we saw a lot of each other!   

I was the only photographer present when he invited all the Senators and Congressmen who were WWII veterans to lunch in April 2004 at the World War II Memorial a week before it was opened.  It was a beautiful Spring day and we sat in the warm sun on the plaza and they told jokes.  I suppose it was his way of thanking them for their service and also for the site location which was a hotly debated location. He knew the real cost of war and was a sensible force.

And yes...He would come down to the Memorial for most of a day and often. 

I'll miss you Bob.

(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) dc Dole honor memorial photography travel washington wwii Fri, 10 Dec 2021 02:38:50 GMT

Through the first of the year, there will be a twenty percent discount using the code "kilroy" as you check out. 


DC PHOTO BOOK is the most comprehensive and up-to-date photo book on DC, the Veterans' Memorials and Arlington Cemetery.  It's success has been due to low price, high quality and a persistent author. It functions both as a memento for out of town visitors and as a desktop ornament in many homes and businesses in DC.  I get immediate feedback from the Guild of Guides and my many knowledgeable friends in the field.

Honor Flight has been a life-changer for the 250,000 plus veterans and untold numbers of volunteers and veterans who have had the experience of flying to DC.  It has changed communities and brought them together. The Network, the hubs and volunteers have preserved my faith in people and continue to bring us "good news" and I maintain there is such a thing.  I hoped to share a few memories in the many homes and families affected so positively by the Honor Flight Network.  I have distributed about 30,000 books separately or in the shrink wrapped sets. 


I've left the Honor Flight book up on the web and it can be accessed by clicking on the picture.  I will be printing an updated shrink-wrapped DC PHOTO BOOK this Winter.  

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(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) #dccool #destinationdc arlington books brown dc flight honor honor flight korea lincoln memorial national park service photography stephen vietnam wwii Sat, 27 Nov 2021 16:05:17 GMT
MILITARY WOMEN'S MEMORIAL Image 11-24-21 at 10.03 PM (1)Image 11-24-21 at 10.03 PM (1)

The Military Women's Memorial is closing for six months. Formerly “Women in Military Service”, the new foundation head is CWS Phyllis J. Wilson. Donna Houle was promoted up the hill and the new Director of the Memorial itself is Cathleen Pearl.


(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) dc honor memorial photography travel washington wwii Fri, 26 Nov 2021 15:39:50 GMT
THE REACH: KENNEDY CENTER Image 11-23-21 at 6.50 PMImage 11-23-21 at 6.50 PM

The "Kleenex Box on the Hudson" is extending itself outdoors with a new section called "The Reach".  Here a sculptural piece by Joel Shapiro called "Blue" is on display in the informal outdoor area.   


(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) dc honor memorial photography travel washington Thu, 25 Nov 2021 02:23:22 GMT
"THE NEW DC" Image 11-23-21 at 5.58 PMImage 11-23-21 at 5.58 PM

I've had a couple of nice days making images of the new Frederick Douglas Memorial Bridge and adjacent waterways.  Maine Avenue (the Channel) and the Southeast areas were run down until the stadium was built and a focused group of builders set loose on the city.  Now, we have Congressman and Senators living on boats and Maine Avenue has become so popular with boaters that there is a dispute between the military and civilian about access to the waterway.  Leaves a long-time Washingtonian to ask..."is that national security or a country club?"


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On the North side of the bridge, we have "Capitol Riverfront" as its known.  Twenty years ago, the area was composed of derelict garages and run down buildings (see page 155) and is now an architectural free for all (below).  Looks like all the architects...freed from the Capitol Restrictions...went crazy.  I began the third chapter of the book entitled THE NEW DC with the bridge as it symbolizes a new bold DC "partially" free of politics.
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(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) blogs books dc dc photo book flight honor honor flight memorial national park service photography travel veteran washington wwii Wed, 24 Nov 2021 23:01:03 GMT
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I was scouting the new Eisenhower Memorial which like every public artwork saw its share of controversy with the renowned architect Frank Gehry flipping off Senators, giving public lectures on his point of view and on the other side,  the aggrieved Eisenhower family trying to change the plans.   I have no idea what the beef was but the Memorial fits nicely in the new edition and I'll be working on it in the next few weeks.  My first campaign pin said "I like Ike".  It still rings a bell.


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(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) blogs books dc photo book Eisenhower flight Gehry honor honor flight memorial national park service photography travel veteran washington wwii Tue, 09 Nov 2021 02:53:44 GMT


I thought it was an excellent book on the WW11 Memorial.I received a copy when I went on my Honor Flight in September 2015. The one I ordered I sent to my wifes Uncle,he is unable to go on an Honor Flight and he is a hero of WW11 receiving a Silver Star and A Bronze Star in Europe. Thank you for sending it to arrived in great shape.




I thought it was an excellent book on the WW11 Memorial.I recieved a copy when I went on my Honor Flight in September 2015.The one I ordered I sent to my wifes Uncle,he is unable to go on an Honor Flight and he is a hero of WW11 receiving a Silver Star and A Bronze Star in Europe. Thank you for sending it to arrived in great shape.

Verified Purchase

My father a WWII vet was able to go on the Vets Roll trip of 2015 to see the monuments in D.C. after he returned I saw a copy of this book and was thrilled when I found it here. Best buy ever!

Verified Purchase

This is a lovely book, but not as I expected. I had bought this for an elderly WWII vet and the inscriptions aren't written so he can read them. It does have a lot of nice photos.

Reviewed in the United States on May 29, 2015

Verified Purchase

Bought this book for my Dad on his return from Honor Flight ... he loves it.

This is an outstanding book on the WWII Memorial...the photographs and writing show that the WWII is alive a is truly the "Jewel on the Mall" in Washington, DC. I have give this as gifts to WWII Veterans that I know.

Granny at the lake

Reviewed in the United States on June 12, 2014

Verified Purchase

So impressed with our World War II Veterans and their service--a wonderful remembrance for any of them who make a visit to the Memorial--perhaps with an Honor Flight group

(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) books dc dc photo book guardian honor flight memorial national park service photography veteran washington wwii Thu, 30 Sep 2021 00:29:00 GMT
@HONOR FLIGHT BOOK 2021 small_Honor Flight srb 02142018_covervfongCOPYRIGHT STEPHEN R. BROWNThese images are copyright @Stephen R. Brown 2021 and not to be used without written permission I met Earl Morse and Jeff Miller in the Spring of 2005.  My book on the new WWII Memorial was just out and so I was at the Memorial frequently.  They would ultimately devise a network of hubs to fly all those veterans to DC.  Based on the correct "assumption that the guardian paying their own way and the veteran flying for free" worked out to more or less pay for the trip, they were off and running.  I decided to take notes and here they are.

I was there frequently for World War II events and as the Honor Flights started rolling in. I began to get some pictures of the Memorial with ....Theresa Werner and her dancers, Dave Nichols and the Allied Airmen, energetic hub leaders like Mary Petinato and record setting fund raisers and stadium filling doers like Stars and Stripes began showing up.  The White House News Photographers showed interest and newspapers and magazines began to do pieces on Honor Flight and the newly built World War II Memorial.  My enthusiasm for the program is evidenced in the newly designed 98 pages which I have put up. 

(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) blogs books brown copyright dc dc photo book flight honor honor flight lincoln mall national park service photo photography r. re-enactor stephen travel veteran vietnam washington wisconsin Thu, 30 Sep 2021 00:26:27 GMT
CASUAL DAY ON THE MALL Interesting Day.  In the AM,  I ran into Tudy Giordano of Honor Flight DFW and Tina Lee of Honor Flight Austin and we had a chance to see each other "live".  DCA volunteers Tara Elizabeth, Andi Smith, Nancy Giffith were also there at the Iwo Jima Memorial and it was great to see them.  

After making a few group pictures with Stars and Stripes at the Iwo, we headed over to the Air Force Memorial.   I wandered and watched VIP Photography's Angela Wangrud do an amazing job of documenting this rich history we are making. Her company VIP supplies several photographers and then archives the images for the veteran and their family. 

20210925-_DSC2531Iwo Jima Memorial 20210925-_DSC2618Stars and Stripes

20210925-_DSC2578Tara ElizabethTara was delighted to be out on such a beautiful day and supporting Honor Flight Syracuse. 20210925-_DSC2545DFW VeteransDFW Veterans reading the "stats" on Iwo Jima.

IMG_7424AIR FORCE MEMORIALStars and Stripes Honor Flight enters the Air Force Memorial.

20210925-_DSC2642FATHER AND DAUGHTER AT AF MEMORIAL   20210925-_DSC2653Sue TripodiSue Tripodi drives down from New Jersey to greet and act as a guardian for Honor Flights. 20210925-_DSC2646Stars and Stripes Air Force Vets at the Air Force Memorial   20210925-_DSC2604Stars and Stripes Interview _DSC2658Air Force Memorial waiting-_DSC2561Honor Flight Syracuse



(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) blogs book books brown dc flight honor national park photo photography r. re-enactor service stephen travel veteran washington Tue, 28 Sep 2021 14:26:12 GMT
ARLINGTON CEMETERY Image 9-23-21 at 9.11 PMArlington Cemetery

When visiting Arlington Cemetery, respect the sacrifice!


(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) Arlington cemetery dc photo book flight national park service photography travel washington Fri, 24 Sep 2021 01:16:08 GMT
HONOR FLIGHT CHICAGO SEPTEMBER 16, 2021 policemototriptwosolopolicemototriptwosolo buseschicago016buseschicago016
Honor Flight Chicago roared into the Iwo Jima Memorial with 250 people and Arlington County once again provided the escorts.  With sirens and lights blaring, they were an impressive sight as they cruised into the Iwo Jima Monument grounds.   We took a loop around the Memorial and we took off for the Air Force Memorial where the Air Force Drill Team put on a dazzling display.


Next stop was the WWII Memorial which I always recommend for group photos because it is surrounded by symbolism and your veteran and sponsor will always have a reminder of the history involved.



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From there to the Korea, Lincoln and Vietnam where the veterans spread out.  I was enjoying an ice cream bar and conversation with a couple of the veterans when the skies opened up.  Wow!  Lightning, Thunder, flooding ...the works but no match for the well-prepared which I was not.  

(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) arlington blogs dc honor memorial motorcycle photography police travel washington wwii Sat, 18 Sep 2021 18:53:14 GMT
INSIDERS VIEW: MILITARY WOMEN'S MEMORIAL 9.11 Image 9-12-21 at 6.10 PMImage 9-12-21 at 6.10 PM

The Military Womens Memorial for 9.11 ceremonies concluded a 177 mile run to preserve the memory of the 177 servicewomen who laid down their lives in response to 9.11.  The run concluded at the gates to the Cemetery where CWS Phyllis J. Wilson, the new Foundation President gave a speech to the assembled group. Ms. Karen Durham-Aguilera, Executive Director of Army Cemeteries spoke followed by Alan Wallace, a Ft. Meyer fire fighter and first responder who said the Pledge of Allegiance. Alan was one of the firefighters on duty 9.11.

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I met briefly with the new Executive Director Cathleen Pearl and former Director Donna Houle who generously gave Honor Flight Chicago shelter in a horrendous rainstorm a couple of years ago!  We filled the auditorium!  She has been the backbone of the Memorial and has been promoted up the hill.  However, the new Director Cathleen Pearl is looking forward to seeing Honor Flights rain or shine!

The ceremony was closed down with a beautiful rendition of Taps by SSG Alicia Eisenstadt, USA.  US ARMY BAND

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(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) blogs books dc dc photo book flight honor honor flight memorial national park service photography travel veteran washington wwii Wed, 15 Sep 2021 01:13:22 GMT
INSIDERS VIEW While the Korea Memorial is under construction there is a limited view of the Memorial but there are ten pages in DC PHOTO BOOK which you can enjoy. DC PHOTO BOOK is without doubt the most comprehensive and elegant photo book on DC.  The books are printed yearly and updated with elegant and meaningful images.

IMG_7324INSIDERS WASHINGTON: HISTORYWhile the Korea Memorial is under construction there is only a limited view of the Memorial but there are ten pages in DC PHOTO BOOK.

(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) dc korea memorial photography travel washington wwii Tue, 14 Sep 2021 15:10:39 GMT
HONOR FLIGHT CHICAGO: BACK IN BUSINESS Image 8-18-21 at 9.39 PMImage 8-18-21 at 9.39 PM Honor Flight Chicago rolled into town today signaling the return of Honor Flights and Good Karma!  Jenny Brawley and Doug Mefley arranged for the Arlington Police to escort them into town so they were "styling" as they entered the Iwo Jima.   I used a long lens to capture this image which was used to head up Honor Flight Chicago's news website and then gifted as prints to the Arlington County Police Department.  The US Park Police motormen are apparently "short on personnel" and I have always found a nice print goes a long way. The motormen are extraordinarily proud of their jobs and it's a pleasure working with them.  

Prior to Chicago's arrival, I managed to make a few images of the Marine Silent Drill Team practicing.  As the veterans assembled and the team began to perform,  the skies opened up and you can see the volunteers ready with ponchos.  



An hour later, we gathered at the WWII Memorial where I had a chance to witness the first ceremony of the new year and a more organized Honor Flight.   Congratulations to everyone involved.  It was fantastic!  Thank you. I haven't had that much fun in sixteen long months!

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(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) Arlington chicago County dc escort flight honor honor flight memorial Motor motorcycle national park service photography Police travel veteran washington wwii Wed, 01 Sep 2021 20:29:21 GMT
POLICE ESCORTS This Wednesday, I'm hoping to see the Park Police Escorts as I pull up to the Iwo Jima Memorial.  They've been short on personnel this year but we are all hoping.  They save Honor Flights two hours minimum a day, make parking easier and the sight of five buses and a couple of escorts has become familiar to DC residents who often stop what they are doing and wave and salute.  It's become one of DC's signature scenes and a favorite activity of the veterans.  Who doesn't like being escorted through traffic?


(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) honor memorial park photography police travel washington wwii Sat, 14 Aug 2021 19:45:20 GMT
WELCOME HOME! WWII REENACTORSWELCOME HONOR FLIGHT! Sid Wade and Sara Sheffield greeting vets at the WWII Memorial.

This Wednesday August 18th, Honor Flight Chicago will be the first Honor Flight to visit DC in some sixteen months. Sid and Sarah are holding my Honor Flight book currently only available with the DC PHOTO BOOK.  

(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) dc dcphotobook honor memorial photography travel washington wwii Thu, 12 Aug 2021 01:42:24 GMT
DOCUMENTING THE MALL small_Honor Flight srb 02142018_Page_20small_Honor Flight srb 02142018_Page_20
Keeping track of the construction and other obstructions to photography and tourism in Washington and the Mall requires scouting multiple trips and much idle gossip.  There are obscure laws which make photography difficult.  It took fifteen years before I was able to make these images of the Korea Memorial with the sculptor's permission which he would only discuss after he won a lawsuit with the Post Office.   In the case of the WWII Memorial, the  crane that I used to make the photograph was on site for six months before I was able to ask for the ride which enabled me to make some unique images.  

The DC PHOTO BOOK has ten pages devoted to Korea, ten pages devoted to Vietnam, four pages to the Women's Memorial at Arlington and another ten to the Cemetery.  It's particularly valuable this year as Korea is under construction and is a mess. 

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(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) dc honor memorial photography travel washington wwii Fri, 06 Aug 2021 22:23:08 GMT
DEAR DR. FAUCI! MDear Dr. Fauci:Vaccinate Me!

I am fully vaccinated and my paperwork is done for Honor Flight. Getting through TSA is ALWAYS a hassle and so I have CLEAR and TSA membership and am thinking of having my vaccination card tattooed on my wrist... I am looking forward to seeing the Honor Flights back on the Mall.  Any advice on tattoos?

As you can see, it's a experience I wouldn't want to miss!

(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) dc photo book destinationdc honor honor flight memorial photography travel veteran washington wwii Thu, 01 Jul 2021 16:20:22 GMT

My nephew Dan resurrected this recording he made some twenty years ago of my father's experiences during WWII. Like most WWII veterans, he is modest about his five year "vacation".  He joined the Naval Reserve a year before the war, was switched into the regular Navy (October 1940) and sent to Philadelphia where he trained.  The ships he eventually sailed on were reconfigured at the Sun Oil shipyards in Chester, Pa. to deliver oil to Pearl Harbor. Eventually those same Sun shipyards in Chester, Pennsylvania became Laran Bronze Foundry where the eagles and much of the bronze work was created for the WWII Memorial.  Parts of the Laran building were filled with old ship templates.

He volunteered for the newly formed Naval Air Service and was sent to Natal, Brazil to work on and fly in PBY Submarine Hunters.  All of our soldiers and sailors were given two salaries: one salary went home and the other they were encouraged to spend in Brazil to keep the economy sound. He joked that if nothing else, he learned to dance and sail during his time in Brazil.  A number of his squardron's PBY planes were lost to submarine activity along the Eastern Coast of South America.  

He did not live to see the WWII Memorial but enthusiastic in all things,  he would have been down at the site supervising the construction if he had. In fact there were a number of WWII Veterans who parked themselves near the construction site to watch.  When the eagles were still on the ground, I had the opportunity to write his name and service location on the inside of the Eagle.  This is the internal structure of the Eagle on the Southwest side of the Pacific Arch. This photo is in the WWII Memorial Book.

WWII MemorialWWII MemorialMy father's name, aircraft type and service imprinted on the steel of the SouthWestern eagle on the Pacific side of the Mall.

*this works on a desktop machine but not on a portable device"

(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) books flight honor honor flight memorial national park service photography travel veteran washington wwii Mon, 21 Jun 2021 22:45:12 GMT
VIRTUAL SUMMIT 2021 EXHIBIT meredithfourHonor Flight Opening


Welcome Back!  I have missed getting out to document the hubs and anticipating seeing you at the airports and on the Mall.   

You should have received a copy of my small Honor Flight Book this month.  As always, I look forward to continuing my documentation of Honor Flight and that has grown to ninety plus pages.  While I rarely take notes, I've sporadically keep a JOURNAL to remind me of the amazingly beautiful spirit of volunteerism alive in this country.   Over the past sixteen years, both the blog and Honor Flight have grown.  I've added some information in the blogs about the various memorials which may be helpful in your planning.  

I made the WWII Memorial Book as a tribute to my father who was a WWII Veteran and also as a tribute to the American craftsmanship which is embodied in these Memorials.  I hope my books which many of the Honor Flights gift to their veterans allow the veterans to "continue the day" with their families. 

There are four books/items described in detail at DC PHOTO BOOKS.  I recommend the "limited edition"  DC PHOTO BOOK as the most elegant of my productions and the best value as it is shrink wrapped with the Honor Flight book.  Insert the code "honorflighthub" into the discount box and you receive the discount.  The WWII Memorial book and the two postcard packs are automatically discounted.  I've set up the books and the boxes they come in for ease of handling and identification.  

The average delivery time nationwide is a week.  With the new shopping cart and warehouse, you will receive tracking throughout.  Any questions, feel free to call or text me.  I've updated my fine art website "" and if you need me, call/text: 202-255-8635.  Email:

Here's a contemporary price sheet of the available inventory:


(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) #hfsummit2021 blogs books dc dc photo book honor honor flight memorial national park service photography travel veteran washington wwii Fri, 11 Jun 2021 21:59:28 GMT
HONOR FLIGHT: BACK IN BUSINESS!! 20181010-IMG_1710September 2018.Welcome Honor Flight! After what may have been the longest fifteen months in history, Honor Flight has announced that after August 15th, hubs may fly.  So far I have Columbus checked in on the 16th, Chicago on the 17th and Stars and Stripes on the 28th.  More to come......


Talked with Senator Dole the other day.  He's doing a piece for the Honor Flight Summit and we got to talking about his cancer which he is is optimistic about.  He's an amazing and inspirational man.

(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) blogs dc dc photo book honor honor flight korea memorial national park service photography travel veterans washington wwii Sun, 06 Jun 2021 02:02:33 GMT
AN INSIDER'S VIEW: TOMB OF THE UNKNOWNS 20190427-IMG_0450Changing of the GuardThis is the ceremony that all try to see. The Tomb Guards pay special attention to Honor Flight and other distinguished veterans by scuffing their feet as they march their path.

Most Honor Flights visit the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and are the only groups allowed to bring a bus into the cemetery. It's quite a hike and shows great respect for Honor Flight.

20190618-_DSC618920190618-_DSC6189 20191112-_DSC160820191112-_DSC1608 20191112-_DSC157520191112-_DSC1575 20190430-_DSC4712A Caisson circles the auditorium at Arlington. Normally the President will make his Memorial Day speech there.



(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) books dc dc photo book honor honor. memorial national park service photography travel veteran washington wwii Mon, 24 May 2021 14:24:02 GMT
ARLINGTON CEMETERY REOPENS 20190618-_DSC603020190618-_DSC6030

PRESS RELEASE THANKS TO DANIEL ARANT: National Park Volunteer, Vietnam Veteran and Historian.

Ahead of Memorial Day weekend, Veterans Affairs officials are lifting all restrictions on visitors to veterans cemeteries across the country provided that they have been vaccinated against coronavirus. That means no masks, no social distancing and no limits on group size at any of the 155 national cemeteries, starting May 26. Individuals who are not fully vaccinated are expected to continue wearing masks and avoiding crowds, in keeping with guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.


Officials at Arlington National Cemetery — arguably the best known veterans cemetery in America, but actually operated by the Army — are expected to announce new visitation rules for next week’s holiday soon. That site typically drew tens of thousands of visitors in the week before and after Memorial Day, but saw far fewer last year because of pandemic restrictions.

The mask and crowd size restrictions have been in place since last June, following a 10-week partial closure of the cemetery sites at the start of the coronavirus pandemic. Funeral services have been ongoing but limited to small numbers of immediate family members. Public gatherings have been curtailed.

Officials said large-scale events typically held over Memorial Day weekend still will not be held at the sites this year, because of ongoing worries about mass gatherings. But individuals and families planning on visiting the cemeteries will be able to resume activities under the same protocols as before the pandemic began.

“For those of us in the VA and especially those in the National Cemetery Administration, Memorial Day is one of the most important days of the year,” acting Under Secretary for Memorial Affairs Ron Walters told reporters on Friday.  “I’m sure many families will be happy to get the news that there will no longer be a limit on the number of people who can attend these services.”

VA officials could not estimate how many individuals may visit the cemeteries next week as a result of the loosened rules. Local staff have been conducting burial and committal ceremonies since last summer, and grounds crews have been maintaining sites throughout the pandemic.

“All of our district directors said that lifting [the restrictions] does not pose any additional challenges to the cemeteries,” Walvers said. “We’ve still had a cemetery representative there, the cemetery directors still needed to be there. Things were already kept up prior to the new

 COVID guidance.”

Families who had a small funeral service during the height of the pandemic can request a larger memorial service now if they want to include a larger crowd in their mourning. Walters said he does not anticipate those requests to add significant workload to staff.

VA officials will not be checking individuals’ vaccine status, but are asking all visitors to use common sense and respect other families by following vaccine guidelines and staying home if they are feeling ill.

About 93 percent of all veterans in America today live within 75 miles of a national or local veterans cemetery, according to the National Cemetery Administration.




(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) blogs books dc dc photo book flight honor honor flight memorial national park service photography travel veteran washington wwii Mon, 24 May 2021 14:11:24 GMT
VIETNAM WALL ETCHINGS BY MICHELE SPRY _DSC2487Honor Flights transitioning to Vietnam Veterans
Michael O'Brien, NPS volunteer at the Vietnam Wall and I were talking about the transition of Honor Flight to Vietnam Veterans and the extra burden this puts on the National Park Service volunteers.  Approximately 50 percent of the names can only be reached by ladder and the rangers and volunteers are the only people allowed on the ladders so.  If the hubs and veterans know the location of the name beforehand, the process will go quicker.   Michele Spry of Central Missouri Honor flight has worked out a very efficient process for making the etchings and I asked her to write up her process.  

As you'll notice, she brings her own paper which she prints with the Missouri Honor Flight logo so it makes for a great framed piece. As soon as the flight lands Michele sets off by cab to the Vietnam Wall to make the etchings requested by Veterans and neighbors in the Central Missouri area. She has made as many as 80 etchings in two hours. I decided to ask Michelle to write up her formula for getting so many done.

IMG_3973Vietnam Wall EtchingNotice the Honor Flight Central Missouri logo top left
"Hey there Stephen R. Brown! 

Just wanted to follow up on our conversation from Monday about what we (Central Missouri Honor Flight) do for our Vietnam Veterans. Steve Paulsell saw a need and asked me to take this on many Honor Flights ago. I love that we do this as it's just one more service we can provide for our veterans on such an emotional yet memorable day in Washington, DC. I realize not every Honor Flight operates like we do (ie: meeting our veterans at a Pre-Flight meeting, then going on the Flight and having a Welcome Home Party 2 weeks later) however I think it would be somewhat easy to incorporate into their routine if they wish to add this memorable yet honoring piece of their trip. (It would certainly help the volunteers at the wall not to become so overwhelmed with names when they all arrive!)

IMG_5066The form is given out to veterans and collected by Michelle.

This is when we get to meet our veterans and go over what will take place for Flight Day. This is also where Steve announces that the 1/2 sheets of paper (see attachment - they are cut in half) on their tables are for any names that they would like looked up and etched (we call them etchings... I know this isn't correct but rubbings sound funny) we will do our best to find the names they request. Many times they know the names of the fallen and the date of their death. However, often times they may only know them by Butch Jones when their real name is Myron Jones for example (I just made that name up). There are many times it takes a little extra work to find a name... I have called High Schools to ask, looked up memorials online for a certain City and State to find a name or simply "got lucky".  

Typically when I research a name I start with Google.... I will type in the name followed by Vietnam Veteran (Rodney Griffin Vietnam Veteran) and it will show me a name on the Virtual Vietnam Wall of Faces. This will allow me to get a correct spelling of the veteran. (I also have a copy of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Book that is at the top of the memorial that is carried with me to Pre-Flight and Flight Day for quick reference as well). If I need additional help finding a name I will call the veteran... amazing what you can accomplish talking to them and asking questions! Once I have all the names located with correct spelling and coordinates on the wall I begin to print out my packets.... 

Screen Shot 2018-11-12 at 8.14.47 PMExcel Spread sheet in order from 70 West to 70 East

The packets start with a cover sheet (see attached) and then the 15-ish page packet of information on the history of the wall. (This information was pulled from the website) I do this to give them a little more knowledge on the wall, who designed it, how names are added and then give them some interesting statistics from the guys who were killed in action (see attached scrolling towards the back of the packet - really interesting). Then I start entering each name on the website and printing off what information it has about each name that was KIA. Again, just a nice touch to give them a little more detail about their brother, friend and who served with them. 

As far as Honor Flights that don't meet their veterans prior to Flight Day they could simply have someone make contact or send an e-mail (most Vietnam veterans have an e-mail or spouse that has one) requesting this information ahead of time. I look up names Flight night and while on the plane and buses - as well as while we are at the wall.

IMG_5032Michelle Spry with database

After I print my packets and the names that were requested (see attachment of example) then we start adding the names to a spreadsheet (see attachment) and put them in order from 70 W to 70 E. We do this so that when I enter the wall at 70 W I can start etching (rubbing) the names without bouncing all around. It literally takes me a couple minutes per name to locate and do the etching (rubbing). The ones I can't reach I simply leave blank or put a star next to it and keep moving until I am done. Then I get a volunteer with a ladder and we begin moving in order from West panel to East panel until they are all done.

For each Honor Flight we usually get around 80-110 names (This time was much less but we still added another almost 20 names once I arrived to Flight Night - then I manually write names for lanyard).  I like to think I have a smooth process. (Of course when we get to DC I immediately take off in a Uber and go to the memorial so that I can focus and get it knocked out before our group gets there) 

IMG_E3989Steve Paulsell with a ranger at the Vietnam Memorial
I forgot to mention that before we leave on Flight Night I put the coordinates of each name that our veterans request in the back of their lanyard so that when they get to the wall they have the exact location of each name they requested... if I got it prior to arriving at the wall. (Also nice that those names get to be with them the whole trip - another special touch) (You can see attachment as I cut them all into smaller pieces of paper to fit in lanyard) 

IMG_3963Notice the requested name has been inserted in veteran's lanyard so he knows where it is when he arrives at Wall.

Once the names are etched (rubbed) then I put them in the appropriate packets (I have a separate bag that has 9 x 12 envelopes with the print outs and just add the etchings (rubbings) on the airplane on our way home. They are separated into Red, White & Blue Buses (what bus they are traveling on) and when we land in St. Louis, MO I give these packets to the bus captain to put in a bag that each veteran receives on their way back home. This way they go home with the etching (rubbing) they requested. 

IMG_5067Completed Packet
I hope that makes sense.... it's a lot of work but something that once you get in a groove it is pretty smooth and works great! Just wanted to find those extra special touches that makes their trip even more special. As you know, the wall can be very hot and we try to keep the guys as cool as possible. We never tell them they can't do the etching themselves but let them know it has been done (I don't let anyone add their own etchings (rubbings) to my pile as I would be afraid it wouldn't get to the right person - most will take pictures, spend time at the name and sometimes leave something for that veteran. 

Most of the time it takes me 1.5 - 2 hours to complete.... mainly depends on how many I can reach (we talked about that) and how many I need the volunteers for."

 **In addition to her work with Central Missouri Honor Flight, Michele is an author of two children's books, a community and business activist and recently brought two World War II veterans together as well as the Corsair they flew during World War II.**

(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) books Central dc dc photo book etchings flight honor honor flight Honro memorial Missouri national park service photography rubbings travel veteran Vietnam washington wwii Fri, 21 May 2021 18:49:59 GMT
AN INSIDER'S VIEW: LEAVING A COIN 20190928-_DSC869620190928-_DSC8696

Leaving a penny means you visited and want to thank the veteran of the armed forces for their service. A nickel left at a grave means you trained at boot camp with the deceased servicemen, while a dime suggests you served with him or her. Paula Nelson of Stars and Stripes made this little side trip for a one of the veterans who wanted to spend a minute with his nephew. 

(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) coin dc honor memorial photography travel washington wwii Tue, 18 May 2021 15:10:55 GMT
AN INSIDER'S VIEW: THE CAPITOL BUILDING This photo of the Inauguration of President Ronald Reagan--the first held on the West Side of the Capitol appeared in LIFE MAGAZINE.  I am sure security will be in high gear this Summer so if you plan to visit, be prepared to be searched. 

Image 1-6-21 at 10.00 PMImage 1-6-21 at 10.00 PMRonald Reagan's Inauguration from the United States Park Police Helicopter. The first held on the West side of the Capitol, it is currently on lockdown thanks to outgoing garbage head of a President. Worst ever!!!!
The East Capitol got an enormous and beautifully done renovation to make it easy for tourists to visit.  

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(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) books dc honor honor flight memorial national park service photography travel washington Sun, 16 May 2021 21:09:32 GMT
AN INSIDER'S VIEW: THE NAVY YARD The Washington Navy Yard requires Military ID and a phone call.  It is one of Washington's best kept secrets. In addition to the museum, the Navy Yard also houses the historians and record keepers for the United States Navy.  Dave Smith of San Diego found excellent speakers for his Saturday night entertainment through the yard.  

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_DSC9353San DiegoSan Diego Honor Flight in the Fall of 2019

(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) blogs books dc dc photo book flight honor honor flight memorial national park service photography travel veteran washington wwii Sun, 16 May 2021 00:12:08 GMT
SPRING CLEANING Image 3-8-21 at 11.56 AMImage 3-8-21 at 11.56 AM

The website has a new design and the shopping cart is in align with the inventory.  I have a new warehouse-- "International Fulfillment Corporation"--located just outside DC.  They have been a major upside to my little publishing business providing brains and brawn!  They have indexed the client list for shipping and helped me set up the shopify cart.  They also have a truck and make deliveries to hotels and places in DC where conventional carriers don't have access.  I have been working with them on a mailing which many of you will receive in the next month.  Honor Flight hubs will be getting a copy of the 44 page HONOR FLIGHT book and a list of available inventory.  For the price of a baseball cap, you can gift books which will serve as a reminder of your part in their special day of Honor.  

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I've recommended to you primarily as an inexpensive storage website for your images and want to remind you that Honor Flight gets a 20 percent discount.  On my website, we've taken advantage of the Zenfolio's many design features, eliminated the "BROWSE FEATURE" and substituted "SEARCH" boxes to speed your image search. If you are interested in prints, get in touch with the studio to confirm the specifications and I'll be happy to work with you to size and design.

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(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) books dc dc photo book honor memorial national park service photography travel veteran washington wwii Tue, 11 May 2021 15:00:01 GMT
NO GREATER LOVE: GOLD STAR MOMS Image 5-9-21 at 10.53 AMImage 5-9-21 at 10.53 AM

Two mothers making a difference. Founding an Honor Flight Network hub (Honor Flight of Greater Lafayette) @Pam Mow and Dana Vann are Gold Star Moms who I had the pleasure of meeting frequently on the Mall.

They began with the intention of taking a single trip for 84 World War II veterans and by the time they finished, they’d organized flights that carried roughly 1,800 World War II, Korean and Vietnam veterans and their guardians.


(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) dc photo book gold honor loss moms star travel veteran washington Sun, 09 May 2021 16:47:42 GMT
AN INSIDER'S VIEW: NATIONAL MALL POSTCARD BOOK Looking to develop a lower priced product than my books, I edited the images in DC PHOTO BOOK down to thirty eight and published this little book with a linen cover. The spine of the book is made of an adhesive strip so the postcards can be torn out and used.  Nifty gift item!



(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) dc honor memorial photography postcard travel washington wwii Wed, 28 Apr 2021 15:48:01 GMT

 Like every DC based photographer, the Cherry Blossoms are a rite of Spring (some may say Passage) that we attend to.  Several years ago, I published a postcard book of Cherry Blossom images which has been quite successful.  Most of the images were made with a camera modified to the infrared spectrum of light.  This makes for a rich visual experience and unique views of the Blossoms.  The cover of the book is going to be printed on Linen stock while the cards inside will be on a flat stock.  The cards are detachable and it makes a nice gift item. 

(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) dc honor memorial photography travel washington wwii Wed, 28 Apr 2021 15:38:35 GMT
AN INSIDER'S VIEW: WOMEN IN MILITARY SERVICE MEMORIAL Image 4-25-21 at 7.18 PMImage 4-25-21 at 7.18 PM

wimsaentancecleanIMG_2320001wimsaentancecleanIMG_2320001DC PHOTO BOOK


Plan time to visit the WOMEN IN MILITARY SERVICE TO AMERICA Memorial(WIMSA).  DC PHOTO BOOK is the only publication that highlights the Women's Memorial. It is is one of the more significant yet invisible architectural triumphs in DC and probably one of the best-kept secrets in Washington, DC.  

Honor Flights have special access to Arlington Cemetery and WIMSA is an easy stop and an opportunity to register your women veterans.  Talons Out, Columbus and Rhode Island Firefighters have all had "women flights" (aka"Rosies") which featured the Memorial.  Brigadier General Pat Foote, one of the founders of WIMSA was at the first Honor Flight Summit and later spoke at an Honor Flight Summit. She is a dynamic and engaging person.

The interior has sweeping forty foot glass ceilings which blow vast amounts of light into the interior.   My show on the WWII Memorial was 440 feet long with 20×30 inch prints hung two high. It was in place for eighteen months and I loved going over there and hanging out! Great place to have a meeting!

wimsacolumbus_DSC7556wimsacolumbus_DSC7556National WWII MEMORIAL FROM JEWEL OF THE MALL

Don’t forget to take a stroll on the roof terrace.  The elevators are adjacent to the bookstore and there are steps on the sides of the Memorial.  Once you are there, you realize that you are in the center of the cemetery with a close view of the Lee Mansion and Kennedy's Grave.  

memorialdriveIMG_2651_600pixROOFTOP TERRACE VIEW

The view of LEE HOUSE from the roof terrace of WIMSA


(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) dc honor memorial military photography travel washington wimsa women wwii Sat, 24 Apr 2021 01:59:19 GMT


Senator Bob Dole (above right)  has taken on a new role - Chair of the Honor Flight Association Ambassadors Program.

On a zoom interview, Senator Dole expressed his happiness accepting this new endeavor. “Honor Flight is a great program and I understand it’s going to be continued next year. Maybe I’ll be able to go down for one flight to say goodbye.”

I promise to be there!

For years, Senator Dole has been at the World War Two Memorial greeting Veterans who come to visit aboard an Honor Flight. The organization brings 20,000 Veterans a year at no cost to the Veterans to the World War 2 Memorial. Dole shared with me he so enjoys greeting the Veterans. 

"Shaking their hands, getting his picture taken with them, and sharing stories about their service."


(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) dc photo book Dole national park service photography Robert Senator travel washington Sun, 21 Mar 2021 19:54:49 GMT
PERSONNEL CHANGE FOR HONOR FLIGHT davesmithportraitdavesmithportrait

After three plus years of extraordinary leadership, Dave Nichols is handing the reins of Honor Flight over to Dave Smith (above), founder of San Diego Honor Flight.  David Smith's initial interest in Honor Flight was through his father's WWII experience and a trip with him to Pearl Harbor.  When he heard that there was no Honor Flight in the San Diego area, he created one which brings veterans for two nights and three days.  For the past decade, he has worked as a leader of the San Diego hub and an active member of the National Board and so is uniquely qualified to lead us. Below is a picture of San Diego's hub!


Dave Nichol's ("Sparky") initial interest came from his being his father's guardian on a Rochester Honor Flight.  As Dave lives in the DC area, he was soon showing up to support every Rochester Honor Flight and soon became a member of the re-enactors group, the "Allied Airmen's Preservation Society" (aka Sparky).  He soon took control of Memorial Drive and the Park Police escorts began asking Dave where he wanted the buses.  During his tenure, he brought new tech to the organization of 131 hubs, flights and arrivals... and new leadership.  I was sure to meet him early every Super-Saturday. 


Jane Julian another long time employee was responsible for the "Lone Eagle" program and managed to bring together a variety of veterans from all over the country for a weekend in DC.  She did it graciously and flew in from Louisiana and recently West Virginia to make the veterans comfortable.  She will be retiring this year. 

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(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) blogs books dc dc photo book flight honor honor flight mall memorial national park service photography travel veteran veterans vietnam washington wwii Sun, 21 Mar 2021 18:53:13 GMT
A WARRIOR'S PASSING Flags of Our Heroes was started by Dave Bauer, a Vietnam Veteran and long time Honor Flight supporter.  He passed away a week ago and will be sadly missed by all who knew him.  His program has been adopted by many of the Honor Flight hubs and so his contribution was large.  

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(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) dc flight honor flight memorial photography travel washington wwii Sun, 14 Mar 2021 19:06:00 GMT
BOB DOLE CALLED TODAY... Image 2-25-21 at 6.12 PMImage 2-25-21 at 6.12 PM

To my surprise, Senator Dole called today out of the blue to say that he was feeling pretty good given he had just had day one of his treatment. I think that he likes to share with fellow patients and I just finished a successful treatment myself.  The grapevine goes deep!  We chatted about the success and professionalism of Honor Flight which is his favorite cause.  His tenacity is considerable and for the first four or five years of Honor Flight, you couldn't stop him from talking about it.  Persistence works! 

We also agreed to get down to the WWII Memorial for a photo session when the weather gets warmer.  I'm looking forward to seeing him.  This picture was taken in 2005 for the introductory page of "WWII MEMORIAL: Jewel of the Mall"....still my favorite book and my favorite Senator! 

It was taken for  on a beautiful Spring day in 2005. Hundreds of people were strolling by the fenced-in construction area and when they recognized Senator Dole, they started waving.  He couldn't resist and went over to the fence and was pressing the flesh (fortunately for me on the other side of the fence or it would have been the end of the photo session).  After ten--actually twenty anxious--minutes I had to remind the Senator that we had six locations to go and a bunch of notables who also wanted their pictures with him.  At the end of the hour long session, he pointed to my daughter and said that "young lady didn't get her portrait with me."  His attention to detail is amazing and his ease with folks is legendary.  

(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) Art Bob Cancer Dole of State the Treatment Thu, 25 Feb 2021 23:29:46 GMT

20191112-_DSC1551LAST FLIGHT OF THE SEASONCentral Missouri exits the airport and heads for the Iwo Jima Memorial on their fifth flight of the year.

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I met Central Missouri Honor Flight at the airport where once again the DCA Honor Flight Volunteers performed the miracle of fish and loaves by getting the whole airport to stop and cheer while the Missouri veterans transited the airport.  You could sense an elevated positive mood alteration as everyone from shop keepers to travelers had stopped their busy day and were cheering for the veterans. I hang with some pretty well-traveled folks and Honor Flights are everywhere...even in the New York Times which did a great article on Honor Flight.  

The impact of Honor Flight extends into the community through travelers, families and countless thousands as they traverse the Mall. This Honor Flight gig could get addictive. Proof of that is our DCA volunteers who are at the airport morning and afternoon for every flight. 

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We had the good fortune to have Steve Jones as our motorcycle escort.  He is a classic "motorman" and dresses elegantly for a crazy and cold job particularly on this November Day!  With the short day that an Honor Flight hub bas in DC, the escorts save us approximately two hours of travel and parking time. We managed to get to every Memorial of note in six hours and get back to the airport on time.  On a warmer day, we might have lingered a bit but...

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 Our first appointment of the day was at Arlington Cemetery for the Changing of the Guards.  This Summer, the Tomb has been particularly crowded but it was empty today because of the cold weather.  We had the opportunity not only to see the changing of the guards but also a wreath laying put on by a local middle school.  


For those of you unfamiliar with this ceremony, the Old Guard changes every hour in the Winter. When Honor Flight veterans are on the scene, they acknowledge their presence by scraping their heels as they go by.  Woe is the person who makes too much noice during the ceremony as a really embarrassing and noisy "dressing down"  follows.  

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The group portrait is done on the steps of the Amphitheater. I wait for Angela Barnes Barrett to set up the photo and take mine as soon as she's finished.  Good to watch these youngsters do all the work.  



We had a great stop at WIMSA and Director Donna Houle personally stepped out and gave a tour of the building and registered our three women veterans with their computer database.  The Memorial is under renovation at the moment and will soon have new displays. I am hoping to work on a photographic exhibit of women combat photographers.  Should be cool!

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When we arrived at the Iwo Jima  Memorial, Anika Oyen assembled the Marines to honor Elemer J. Dapron who recently passed away. A well-known Jefferson City business man and success story, he gave up his spot on an earlier Honor Flight to another veteran and passed away before he could join us today.  He fought both in WWII and Korea and was ultimately knighted by the Queen.  Pretty interesting for a guy who grew up homeless and taught himself to read.  

Anika distributed a handful of black sand from Iwo Jima beach in memory of Elmer. The thimbleful of sand which will soon wash away but our little ceremony will blossom in the memory of all who were present. Each hub has a flavor of its own and Missouri is marked by small moments like this which usually translate into great stories.... of which one Rodney Griffiin is a tale for another time (see the HONOR FLIGHT BOOK)...


20191112-_DSC175620191112-_DSC1756Anika Oyen distributes sand from Iwo Jima near the basis of the Memorial.


The caravan then took the grand tour around town with a brief stop at the Navy Memorial.  A sailor at heart, I was disappointed to see that the water from the seven seas and the Great Lakes was not in the gorgeous fountains.  We did however get to pose with the "LONE SAILOR" and commemorate a veterans life with a photo.  



It was absolutely frigid by time we got to the WWII MEMORIAL but we had an hour to get the few WWII Veterans out to see their Memorial and make a few images.


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Our next stop was the South circle adjacent to Lincoln and we had choice spots by the concession stand which despite the cold served up a Dove gotta stay warm! Energized, I wandered over to Korea and began organizing the Korea Veterans who surprisingly had stayed together making this photograph of all of them possible.


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I spent the remainder of the trip discussing book publishing issues and trying to get a feel for whether the soft, hard and "limited edition" books were most popular.  Publishing on a yearly basis gives me a chance to update and improve the books and there is economy in focus.  

I've been reading a lot of Bill Gates and Steven Pinker and will be working on my Honor Flight and DC PHOTO BOOKS publishing projects.  Looking forward to 2021 where we will all be vaccinated and flying.  DC is not the same without you!


(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) blogs books chicago dc dc photo book flight honor honor flight korea lincoln mall memorial national park service photography travel veteran veterans vietnam washington wwii Mon, 21 Sep 2020 01:00:00 GMT
FLIGHT OF CHAMPIONS: STARS AND STRIPES 10/19/2019 Part Four Homecoming Homecoming

It's hard to describe the intensity of easily 5000 plus people lined up in a gauntlet which it's a pleasure to run and run I did.  By time everyone it was over, I had traversed the walk probably ten times and each pass brought new pictures.



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(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) and dc honor memorial photography stars stripes travel veteran washington wisconsin wwii Sat, 19 Sep 2020 01:00:00 GMT


We arrived back at BWI after another exciting United States Park Police escort.  It's amazing how traffic disappears when you have a couple of motorcycles leading the way.  As a photographer, I am used to be searched "thoroughly" and this being the second Honor Flight I've flown with, I am amazed that we cruise through security without stopping.  The last time I wasn't searched, I was traveling on Air Force Two with Ronald Reagan!  Presidential Treatment!

About 30 minutes into the flight all of the volunteers began assembling for mail call. This is a much talked about Honor Flight tradition and so I was particularly anxious and grateful to be present for this.  It was everything I imagined and the emotional reaction of the veterans was deeply felt.

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As we were descending into the airport, Quarterback Bill Schroeder made a farewell speech from the front of the plane and not only was he moved to tears but I suspect everyone on the plane felt the same.  It's hard to focus when you are tearing up.  I made one good frame and it summed up the day. 20191019-_DSC056520191019-_DSC0565


(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) dc football greenery honor memorial packers photo photography travel washington wisconsin wwii Fri, 18 Sep 2020 20:46:16 GMT
FLIGHT OF CHAMPIONS: STARS AND STRIPES 10/19/2019 Part Two Once aloft, the Green Bay Packers showed why they are so loved by their Wisconsin fans. As soon as the seat belt sign was extinguished, the Packers were out of their seats, shaking hands and signing anything and everything offered. They were absolutely industrial and signed throughout the 90 minute flight.  


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20191019-_DSC0175BWISeveral hundred fans lined the hallways of BWI to greet Stars and Stripes three planes.   

As we arrived at BWI, we got the water cannon salute and as we deplaned,  there were a couple of hundred well-wishers lined up at the gate and more scattered along the hallways as the veterans headed for the buses.  Dave Nichols and Meredith Rosenbeck were on hand to greet all three planes.  Glen was also on hand

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20191019-_DSC016420191019-_DSC0164Honor Flight Chair Dave Nichols and CEO Meredith Rosenbush were on hand here shown with Paula Nelson. _DSC0148_DSC0148

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And we are off for another fun filled United States Park Police escort which was thrilling, action packed and always a crowd pleaser.  Time is always short and so we were off to our only appointment of the day:  the Tomb of the Unknown. Honor Flight is I believe the only organization that the Cemetery allows to bring buses.  Having walked the hill, it's a pleasure to ride!


Arlington National Cemetery


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Next stop the Iwo Jima Memorial where we assembled for individual and group photos with the players. One of the great luxuries of the day for me was that VIP Photography was on the job and set the group photographs up. This group photography business is nerve wracking as you have approximately 150 people who are not paying attention but will be disappointed if they can't see themselves in the print.  And you have to do it perched on a wheelchair! HERDING CATS!


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(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) dc football greenery honor memorial packers photo photography travel washington wisconsin wwii Thu, 17 Sep 2020 20:44:26 GMT
FLIGHT OF CHAMPIONS: STARS AND STRIPES 10/19/2019 Part One 20191019-_DSC0602MVP@LeRoy Butler escorts a veteran through the sea of well-wishers that turned out to greet this "Flight of Champions" For me the perfect way to finish up a perfect day. I heard that Stars and Stripes had been approached by the Green Bay Packers to do a special flight with retired Packers players as guardians.  The Packers promised to get the Brewers and the Bucks and better yet, raise the money for the flight.  A deal you can't refuse and an opportunity to get three planeloads of veterans to fly to DC!  So it was called "Flight of Champions" and indeed it was!

I called Paula Nelson and managed to get a seat promising to share the images with all the parties involved. I needed more homecoming images as I had only flown with Chicago several years ago and needed some variety.  

I arrived in Green Bay the night before the flight and was met by an eager group of volunteers who I photographed at Lambeau Field--Wisconsin's Field of Dreams!  While all the volunteers are long time Stars and Stripes veterans, this was a new airport and a new organization.  Two hundred plus veterans and guardians had to be registered for the flight, served breakfast, flown to DC, toured about and then greeted by five thousand plus people that night. Who's in Charge?...Paula Nelson.  

In Milwaukee, there were two more flights loading up.  Stars and Stripes is known for "going big" and in the past filled a stadium with fifty thousand people for an Honor Flight event and routinely flies the largest groups of veterans.  

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_DSC9931FLIGHT TIMEAt 4AM, a planeload of veterans lines up for registration for their Day of Honor.

After a good breakfast, as the veterans and guardians board the plane and as they do, VIP Photography takes pictures which in addition to their use for security and advertising also serve the veterans for their everyday photo use. Not many of us has a professional picture in these days of iPhones.  VIP has been an important patron of Stars and Stripes as they professionally take and archive the photos from each flight.  

After the Pledge of Allegiance and some words from local civic leaders, we were off and started our flight with a water cannon salute.  Packers alumni Jared Abbrederis, LeRoy Butler, Jarrett Bush, Johnnie Gray and Bill Schroeder were on the flight and no sooner were we airborne than they were shaking hands, signing autographs and bantering with veterans.   

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I was seated right across from Leroy Butler, the originator of the Lambeau Leap and the original Mr. Nice Guy. He and the other players participated fully in the day available at any moment to chat, shake hands and sign everything from t-shirts to hats.  And having spent the day with LeRoy, it was hard to believe his ferocious reputation on the field! _DSC0096cropLeRoy ButlerHe played in 181 games, earned a Super Bowl ring, for Super Bowl XXXI, following the 1996 season, was selected as an All-Pro four times and was selected to the Pro Bowl four times (1993, 1996, 1997, and 1998). He was named to the 1990s NFL All Decade Team, by the Pro Football Hall of Fame, and was later inducted into the Green Bay Packers Hall of Fame, in 2007. On November 6, 1997, the Green Bay Packers signed Butler to a five-year, $15 million contract extension that includes a signing bonus of $5 million.[5] On October 7, 1999, the Green Bay Packers signed Butler to a three-year, $21.50 million contract extension that includes a signing bonus of $1.63 million.[6]



(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) dc football greenery honor memorial packers photo photography travel washington wisconsin wwii Tue, 15 Sep 2020 19:00:28 GMT
SAN DIEGO MAY 5, 2019 There were ten plus Honor Flights coming into BWI this morning and so I found myself going through security multiple times as I tried to greet several flights.  San Diego came in near the end of the day so I was able to spend some time with them and then take the bus with them over to the BWI Hilton. Dinner was served and Rear Admiral Crow gave an amazing talk on the five ships that had the name USS San Diego.  The Admiral is chief historian at the Navy Yard in SE DC and his office keeps track of the millions of items that are part of a ship's inventory.  


_DSC4952San Diego Honor Flight arrives at BWI Airport _DSC4952San Diego Honor Flight arrives at BWI Airport

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IMG_0664Rear Admiral Crow gave a talk on the four ships with the name "San Diego:.


(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) books dc dc photo book flight honor flight honorf memorial national park service photography travel veteran washington wwii Wed, 12 Jun 2019 13:14:21 GMT
HERDING CATS: COLUMBUS AND NEVADA 20180609-DSC_941920180609-DSC_9419

I was at the WWII Memorial to photograph Senator Dole yesterday. And while I intended to make a few frames and leave. Nevada and Columbus came in together and some four hours later, the last Honor Flight left and Senator Dole and I packed it up and headed home.  

Due to scheduling, I have been missing Columbus. Today I managed to meet the new Honor Flight Columbus lead Pete MacKenzie, Beth Johnson and Cindy Kanwar.  As they had not planned a group shot, they left it to me and we managed to round up ALL of the veterans which took a few minutes.  The volunteers and tourists kindly obliged my constant pleas to move back and we managed to get it done.

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Beth Johnson has been doing an amazing job of social media and web for Honor Flight Columbus and she had her day with her today on his birthday.  Cindy Kanwar and I after many posts exchanged on Facebook finally had our selfie in person and Pete MacKenzie's daughter Melanie met the buses on Homeland Drive.  

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Senator Dole with various and sundry

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20180609-DSC_931820180609-DSC_9318  Jon Yuspa's mom

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(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) dc honor memorial photography travel washington wwii Mon, 03 Jun 2019 01:58:00 GMT
BLUE RIDGE HONOR FLIGHT 05-04-2019 This was Blue Ridge's first flight into BWI and they used Allegiant Airlines to save money.  Not much of an inconvenience as the Park Police provided an escort down the BWI parkway and right into town.  


20190504-_DSC5120Blue Ridge Honor Flight greeting and heading for buses 20190504-_DSC5120Blue Ridge Honor Flight greeting and heading for buses 20190504-_DSC5120Blue Ridge Honor Flight greeting and heading for buses 20190504-_DSC5120Blue Ridge Honor Flight greeting and heading for buses 20190504-_DSC5120Blue Ridge Honor Flight greeting and heading for buses 20190504-_DSC5120Blue Ridge Honor Flight greeting and heading for buses 20190504-_DSC5120Blue Ridge Honor Flight greeting and heading for buses


Park Police EscortAlways one of the more thrilling parts of the day. _DSC5150_DSC5150

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(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) blogs books dc flight honor memorial national park service photography travel veteran washington wwii Mon, 13 May 2019 20:13:04 GMT
SUPER SATURDAY MAY 12, 2019 Too many hubs to plan anything so I decided to motorcycle around the Mall to see how many hubs I could catch.  A bit random but it worked out nicely.  At the WWII Memorial I found Dave Nichols aka: "Sparky" and Keith Gentry.  The BWI Brownies had just escorted the Long Island hub from BWI to the WWII Memorial.  The Brownies have escorted hundreds of hubs to the Memorials and routinely greet them around the Mall.  

IMG_6019Dave Nichols and Keith Gentry

Next, Korea where I found Stars and Stripes forming up for a group picture. As usual, they had two groups of five buses alternating around the Mall. Amidst the crowds and chaos and wailing sirens, Paula Nelson remains unflappable. Stars and Stripes has always been of the "go big or go home" approach and she carries on the tradition.

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I followed Stars and Stripes to the Air Force Memorial, took a few images and then...

IMG_6043Stars and Stripes AlphaAT the Air Force Memorial

...over to the Vietnam Memorial where I found Ron Newsum of Brushy Creek Area Honor Flight (Eastern Iowa) and his veterans.  The switch to Korea and in particular Vietnam has been an easy one and as most of the veterans are around my age, we always end up chatting for a good while. I was at the Wall the day it opened and slept on top of the Wall to secure my position.  That photo is in DC PHOTO BOOK.   

20190511-IMG_6053Ron NewsumBrush Creek Area Honor Flight, Eastern Iowa

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As I was leaving, Stars and Stripes five bus "B group" was filtering into the Memorial with Angela Wangrud, Stars and Stripes principal photographer who was working with a group of veterans at the Wall.

IMG_6064Angela Wangrudand Stars and Stripes Vietnam Veterans. angeleaangelea
The roster called for seven of the flights to converge on the WWII Memorial in the afternoon. I arrived to find Stars and Stripes Alpha team already there with good friend Jody Baber Mclain of Badger Honor Flight pushing a chair to help out. She is pictured with C. Patrick McCourt who works with the "Allied Airmen's Preservation Alliance" as a greeter.  He is a "frequent flier" at the Memorial.

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IMG_6094Jon Yuspa and Jody McLainJohn has started a new hub in his home state of Maryland.
While chatting with Jody, I mentioned that I thought the hubs were crowding each other at the WWII Memorial in the afternoon.  Turns out as most of these veterans were Korea/Vietnam, all the hubs had chosen to concentrate on Korea and Vietnam in the AM while the vets were fresh.

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After that, I had the opportunity to take a walk aound the Memorial with Leatherstocking Honor Flight's Jim and Barbara Furlong.  

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As we were strolling around, we met a veteran who was having an emotional time of it and Barbara seemed to know when to hug him and settle him down. While Honor Flight makes no claim to healing, a nice hug at the right time might be just the thing!

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IMG_6106A hug at the right time

I have been doing Leatherstocking's photo for years and since they decided to do it at the Lincoln, I hopped on the bus.



(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) blogs dc dc photo book honor honor flight korea memorial national park service photography travel veterans washington wwii Mon, 13 May 2019 13:45:01 GMT
BWI WELCOME 05-04-2019 _DSC5134Glen Anderson directs Blue Ridge Honor Flight vets to bus

Living in DC, it's much easier to get to Reagan Airport than BWI but I wanted to cover the ground crew there as well for future publication.  Not being a morning person, I stayed at the BWI Hilton Friday night so I could get a little extra sleep in the AM.  This allowed me to greet San Diego Honor Flight Friday afternoon and Blue Ridge in the morning.  There were nine water cannon salutes and I missed every one of them!  Guess that tree didn't fall!

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Honor flightBWI GROUND CREWOn Saturday May 4th, nine Honor Flight hubs arrived at BWI airport to be greeted by scores of greeters, guardians and tour guides Honor flightBWI GROUND CREWOn Saturday May 4th, nine Honor Flight hubs arrived at BWI airport to be greeted by scores of greeters, guardians and tour guides Honor flightBWI GROUND CREWOn Saturday May 4th, nine Honor Flight hubs arrived at BWI airport to be greeted by scores of greeters, guardians and tour guides Honor flightBWI GROUND CREWOn Saturday May 4th, nine Honor Flight hubs arrived at BWI airport to be greeted by scores of greeters, guardians and tour guides Honor flightBWI GROUND CREWOn Saturday May 4th, nine Honor Flight hubs arrived at BWI airport to be greeted by scores of greeters, guardians and tour guides Honor flightBWI GROUND CREWOn Saturday May 4th, nine Honor Flight hubs arrived at BWI airport to be greeted by scores of greeters, guardians and tour guides Honor flightBWI GROUND CREWOn Saturday May 4th, nine Honor Flight hubs arrived at BWI airport to be greeted by scores of greeters, guardians and tour guides Honor flightBWI GROUND CREWOn Saturday May 4th, nine Honor Flight hubs arrived at BWI airport to be greeted by scores of greeters, guardians and tour guides Honor flightBWI GROUND CREWOn Saturday May 4th, nine Honor Flight hubs arrived at BWI airport to be greeted by scores of greeters, guardians and tour guides Honor flightBWI GROUND CREWOn Saturday May 4th, nine Honor Flight hubs arrived at BWI airport to be greeted by scores of greeters, guardians and tour guides Honor flightBWI GROUND CREWOn Saturday May 4th, nine Honor Flight hubs arrived at BWI airport to be greeted by scores of greeters, guardians and tour guides Honor flightBWI GROUND CREWOn Saturday May 4th, nine Honor Flight hubs arrived at BWI airport to be greeted by scores of greeters, guardians and tour guides Honor flightBWI GROUND CREWOn Saturday May 4th, nine Honor Flight hubs arrived at BWI airport to be greeted by scores of greeters, guardians and tour guides Honor flightBWI GROUND CREWOn Saturday May 4th, nine Honor Flight hubs arrived at BWI airport to be greeted by scores of greeters, guardians and tour guides Honor flightBWI GROUND CREWOn Saturday May 4th, nine Honor Flight hubs arrived at BWI airport to be greeted by scores of greeters, guardians and tour guides Honor flightBWI GROUND CREWOn Saturday May 4th, nine Honor Flight hubs arrived at BWI airport to be greeted by scores of greeters, guardians and tour guides Honor flightBWI GROUND CREWOn Saturday May 4th, nine Honor Flight hubs arrived at BWI airport to be greeted by scores of greeters, guardians and tour guides Honor flightBWI GROUND CREWOn Saturday May 4th, nine Honor Flight hubs arrived at BWI airport to be greeted by scores of greeters, guardians and tour guides




(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) blogs books dc dc photo book flight honor honor flight memorial national park service photography travel veteran washington wwii Sun, 12 May 2019 22:43:13 GMT
HONOR FLIGHT SATURDAY 04/27/2019 _DSC4115Honor Flight Maine with banners blowing.
Breezy winds kept the banners blowing and the spirits high on this beautiful day in April.  There were ten hubs on the roster and i spent the day at the WWII Memorial and managed to photograph six. The gusty winds were pleasant as was the temperature but communicating with the groups was impossible with so I did a lot of waving and gesturing.  It worked ...more or less.   

Minnesota Honor Flight was accompanied by Tami Stieger so I let her do all the work and then slipped in and made a few pictures.  The group was small enough that they fit against the Wall of Stars.


_DSC4142WINDY!Winds bowed the head of the Honor Guard.


Cleveland was a small enough group that I was able to make a photograph of them from the side and I very much like the final composition.  

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20190424-IMG_0343HF ClevelandThe Gibonys: flight leaders and husband and wife. I am noticing a lot of husband and wives and close family running these flights.

As the winds got stronger during the day, i kept moving the groups away from the fountain.  Everyone was very helpful in making the photographs possible. 
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Honor Flight has become so well known that tourists and school children all lined the walkway from Homeland Drive to the Memorial.  It's always quite touching to see everyone greeting the veterans.

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IMG_0351Every Saturday, DCA Honor Flight Volunteers come in and shake hands with incoming veterans.

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Senator Dole showed up around noon and stayed for three hours shaking hands with veterans, tourists and international visitors as well.  

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(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) honor memorial photography travel washington Thu, 02 May 2019 22:31:35 GMT
GREATER PEORIA HONOR FLIGHT 04/30.2019 20190430-_DSC4763Greater PeoriaThree photographers made the setup easy

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(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) Tue, 30 Apr 2019 13:53:00 GMT
"War Heroes on Board"

Arriving at the WWII Memorial, I found Greater St. Louis Honor Flight just getting off the buses. With no agendas or specific photos to be taken, I wandered down with flight leader Rolando Lopez into the Plaza.

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Rolando said he had a special guest with him and suggested I ride with him over to Arlington. The special guest was Marine Corps Drill Sgt Helen Bidnick Kevrick, the first women Drill Instructor in the Marine Corps long history.  On our way up to see the Changing of the Gaurds, we stopped by the Women in Military Service Memorial where she was given a plaque commemorating her service.  

_DSC3918Drill Instructor Sgt Helen Bidnick Kevrick,is given a certificate of valor by ______ at the Women's Memorial.From Robin Kevrick Baker's post: "...Helyn was the first female drill instructor in the USMC. She has always been an incredible woman who had an incredible influence on me. And she (along with my Uncle Morris) gave me a whole bunch of wonderful cousins."
IMG_0317Changing of the Guardwitnessed by Greater St. Louis

As the Changing of the Guard ceremony concluded, I ran into Brian Ziegler and @Jodi McClain who needed a group photograph taken and shipped to Wisconsin. I left Rolando and assembled both the veterans and then the veterans and the guardians.  We didn't make the deadline but it was a fun picture to take.


(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) blogs dc dc photo book flight honor honor flight memorial national park service photography travel veteran washington wwii Wed, 24 Apr 2019 23:54:31 GMT
TALONS OUT...April 20,2019 The 9/11 MEMORIAL

_DSC38079/11 Memorial with Talon's Honor FlightDiscussing the arc of the plane into the Pentagon.


The 9/11 Memorial was our first stop.  It's an understated Memorial to the lives lost that day.  Laid out by the age of victims, the benches point towards or away from the Pentagon to indicate whether they were in the building or the plane. 

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From the 9/11, we worked our way over to the Iwo Jima Memorial where the veterans posed for pictures. There is construction on the steps on both the East and West sides of the Monument so watch your veterans and warn them.  

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The Air Force Memorial has become a favorite spot for Honor Flights to take a break, have lunch and gather thoughts as they proceed through the day.

_DSC3824Air Force MuseumGrowing in popularity with the Flights as a perfect place to stop and take in the view.


(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) blogs books dc dc photo book honor honor flight honorfl korea memorial national park service photography travel veterans vietnam washington wwii Tue, 23 Apr 2019 21:58:28 GMT
DCA HONOR FLIGHT ARRIVAL...April 20,2019 20190420-_DSC372520190420-_DSC3725

I had the opportunity to visit with three Honor Flights this Saturday and work the crowds at the Reagan gates and take two group pictures. The DCA Honor Flight Greeters hooked me up with a gate pass and so I was able to photograph both Dayton Honor Flight lead by Al Bailey who has been doing this since 2005/6 and Talons Out Honor Flight lead by Bobbi Bradley. As they arrived, they were greeted with the customary water arch in tribute and as they deplaned by throngs of people, bands and bystanders who stuck out their hands to say thanks.  Greg Locher and Carol Cloyd from American Airlines made sure all went well at the gates. A few of the greeters will spend the rest of the day as either volunteers or tour guides for the hubs.  

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20190420-_DSC3738Bobbi BradleyBobbi Bradley leader of Talons Honor Flight arrives in DC

Talons Out had 84 Veterans total.  They were 14 WWII Vets, 14 Korean War Vets and 56 Vietnam Veterans.  They are planning two to three more flights depending on how fund raising goes.  

IMG_5655Al Bailet, Honor Flight Dayton

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After leaving the gates, we boarded the buses and were met by our Park Police escorts among them Steve Jones, motorman extraordinaire.  He's got the loudest bike in the fleet and watching him break up traffic or a crowd on the bike is just amazing.  With the tie and the new motorman's cap, he was looking sharp. No matter what kind of ride you're on, you can't be cooler than a motorman!

20190420-_DSC3782Steve Jones had a new "motorman's cap"...tres cool
Kevin Mont pictured below with Angela Petit was the bus driver. As he's a retired police officer himself, the relationship  between he and the escorts is solid.  I'm still holding my breath thinking about the buses weaving pretty nimbly behind the cycles and the officers dashing into intersections while waving cars over. I haven't had that much fun since I worked traveling pool at the White House. It is apparently the most remarked on activity in the Honor Flight Day. We are lucky to have the escorts as it saves two plus hours per day.

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To be continued

(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) books dc dc photo book flight hon honor honor flight memorial national park service photography travel veteran washington wwii Tue, 23 Apr 2019 21:52:56 GMT
ON THE ROLL: RHODE ISLAND WOMEN -4/06/2019 Rhode Island Firechiefs HF All Women Veterans Flight


George Farrell and his team from Rhode Island were inspired to do an "all women" vet flights and with the support of the Federated Women's Clubs of America and other donations, they managed to get the ladies down here and show them their memorials.  Their first and longest stop was at the Women's Memorial just before they traveled up to the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.  

20190406-_DSC3555Four Senators met at the WWII Memorial to greet the Women Veterans

I met them at the WWII Memorial and managed to get a few pictures of the assembled dignitaries.  George managed to get Senators Bob and Elizabeth Dole and Senator Jack Reed and Senator Maggie Hassan assemble as the women got off the bus. They were a boisterous and good natured group and Sparky and I went over to Arlington to join them for dinner. 


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(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) dc dc photo book firefighters flight honor memorial photography ri washington wwii Tue, 16 Apr 2019 12:24:37 GMT
ON THE ROLL--HF 4/06/2019 Rochester _DSC3485_DSC3485

Rochester Honor Flight was escorted by the BWI Brownies a motorcycle group lead by Keith Gentry, a retired Maryland policeman.. They have been meeting Honor Flights for five or six years now and add to the sense of welcome at the WWII Memorial.  Like everyone in Honor Flight, they have been changing it up lately by meeting groups not just at the airport but also escorting them at the various Memorials.  ;


Vince Wilson and the Gotta Swing In Support of Honor Flight is a regular greeter.  

George Kerestes has been a volunteer since before the Memorial opened.  He would show up in a business suit with an American Flag tie and greet some of the veterans who were hanging out watching the construction. 


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(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) dc photo book photography travel veteran washington Tue, 16 Apr 2019 12:13:35 GMT

20190406-_DSC3350Honor Flight Austin

It was a beautiful day in Paradise as @Honor Flight Austin lined up for pictures.  Lead by Tina Lee and Alan Bergeron they assembled for pictures both outside the book store and on the Mall with both the Lincoln and the Washington for backgrounds.  Talk about nice choices!


One sign of Spring in DC is monumental traffic around the Cherry Blossoms.  Seven Honor Flights plunged into gridlock but no problem...Park Police escorts simply closed Independence for a few minutes while they brought the buses against traffic from the Lincoln to the WWII Memorial.  

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_DSC3304_DSC3304 _DSC3333_DSC3333 _DSC3342Tina Lee

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(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) books dc photo book flight honor memorial national park service photography travel veteran washington wwii Mon, 08 Apr 2019 15:37:17 GMT

Lauren Burycka and W.Bart Smith of Honor Flight DCA with Christina Bauer of The Guild of Professional Tour Guides of Washington DC put on an introduction to twenty five Guild Members interested in volunteering with Honor Flight hubs. Guild members are required to go through intense training and licensing. They are incredibly knowledgeable about the city and its history and as a book publisher, valuable allies in documenting the city.  

Guild Guides like Jodi Alleva Swacha and Laura Nelson-bolick are already volunteering frequently and Honor Flight DCA is looking for volunteers to serve more hubs.  As a "Friend of the Guild", I got an invitation and stopped by to see the presentation which was extraordinarily moving. It inspired a room full of guides to volunteer.  Honor Flight DCA  has developed into a full service organization to serve hubs coming into DC.  Lauren was going to be leading a tour of Arlington Cemetery for new volunteers so Honor Flight is turning into an opportunity to learn about the city.  In fact, Bart Smith's voluteering with Honor Flight hubs ended him up in the Guild where he serves as Treasurer. 

The meeting was held in Terminal A, the old part of Reagan Airport and the area is filled with romantic pictures of the airport when air travel was more hospitable.  



IMG_5310Honor Flight DCAHONOR FLIGHT DCA book club members gathered in the airport this morning.


(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) dc honor memorial photography travel washington wwii Sat, 09 Mar 2019 18:14:14 GMT

Honor Flight continues to grow and prosper. Dave Nichols (aka: Sparky) has streamlined operations and the board's choice of new CEO Meredith Rosenbeck to run the organization has certainly upped the Network game. Summit talks covered security, health, chartering, transition and general veteran care. Meredith handled legal affairs for the Network prior to this so she's familiar with the issues hubs have.  

The new phone app allowed attendees to move between sessions with ease and make the most of the short time we have for the Summit.  On Sunday I was the very much surprised recipient of a flag ceremony performed by Dave Bauer and Jerry Keyser. Quite an honor! 

_DSC3114Behind the Scenes

IMG_5083Board of Directors@Brian Ziegler, Bill Welser (@Space Coast Hnnor Flight), Carol Harlow, Dave Nicols, Meredith Rosenbeck, Scott Fraser, Paula Nelson (Stars and Stripes) and Theresa Warner (Gottaswing Dancers).

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(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) bwi dc dc photo book flight growth hilton honor memorial photography travel veteran washington wwii Wed, 20 Feb 2019 01:00:48 GMT
BADGER HONOR FLIGHT 20181103-IMG_4469DCA VolunteersDCA Volunteers gather for Badger Flight's Jody McLain and Brian Ziegler's retirement from their current positions as Chair and Flight Coordinator for Badger Honor Flight.

Honor Flight DCA put together a special welcome for Jody McClain and Brian Ziegler on their last flight as leaders of Badger Honor Flight. It's obvious that the mission has created strong bonds and friendships so it got a bit misty at the end of the day.  It was a full bore reception with bands, crowds, flags and lots of color.  For a photographer who likes color, it was sensational! 

20181103-IMG_4505-2GreetingsTwo scouts look out to the water cannon salute given to each Honor Flight plane that comes into the airports. IMG_4501-2IMG_4501-2 IMG_4759IMG_4759 IMG_4474IMG_4474 IMG_4475IMG_4475 IMG_4480-2IMG_4480-2 IMG_4487-2IMG_4487-2



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20181103-IMG_4607HERDING CATS89 veterans plus 89 guardians plus the medical crew for approximately 190....possibly an HF record for this location! Jest saying....

20181103-IMG_4615The Medical Team never gets photographed! IMG_4628The Medical Team never gets photographed!

IMG_4622Lunch at the Iwo Jima Memorial IMG_4627Lunch at the Iwo Jima Memorial


20181103-IMG_4616Sarah Cotter Schraven distributes water to the troops. Sarah Cotter Schraven distributing water. IMG_4701Jodi McClain, Kerem Bilge and Brian Ziegler at the WWIII Memorial

Sarah Cotter Schraven distributes water to the troops.


IMG_4672Nancy Griffith and Veteran at Vietnam Wall IMG_4660IMG_4660
IMG_4673Vietnam Veteran takes an impression with the help of guardian. WWII MEMORIAL
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IMG_4719Paula Nelson and Jody McClain

Paula Nelson and Jody McClain cross paths at the WWII Memorial.  These two young ladies are midshipmen at the Naval Academy.

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(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) and Badger blogs books dc dc photo book Flight Honor honor flight memorial national park service photography Stars Stripes travel veteran washington wisconsin wwii Thu, 06 Dec 2018 21:19:32 GMT
SOUTHERN COFFEE COUNTY KANSAS HONOR FLIGHT 11/2018 _DSC3050Family ReunionJeffrey True (left) with Bob Harred (2nd from right). The guardian is his grandson, Cooper Harred (far right). He is a junior at SCC. The Marine is his other grandson, Bryce Joonas who surprised him at the Iwo Jima Memorial.  
Jeff True a high school a 29 year social studies teacher and leader of Southern Coffey Honor Flight let me know they were going to be at the Iwo Jima Memorial.  I have known Southern Coffey for a long time now as I have always been impressed by the fact that students raise the funds to pay for the Honor Flight and act as guardians. Quite an undertaking especially as it is a multi-day trip.
20181108-_DSC3033Southern Coffey KansasHigh School Guardians pose with veterans at the Iwo Jima Memorial

I asked Jeff True about Southern Coffey's flights and he said:

"We had 24 veterans paired with 24 high school guardians. We had 8 other adult guardians, including a medical doctor from our local hospital. We always pair up a veteran with one of our high schoolers. It is pretty AMAZING to see the interaction and bonds that are created between the two different generations. We would never consider doing it any different!

We always take 56 people total because that is the number that fills a charter bus. Our trips cost just over $30,000 per trip, and we take two trips per year. One in April and one in November. We have transported 430 veterans in the 15 trips that we have done so far. Planning our 16th trip for April 11 and 12, 2019.

All who go on the trips go at NO cost to them. The money for our trips is raised in a wide variety of ways. Our students and two communities of LeRoy and Gridley, Kansas work throughout the year to help raise money to fund our trips. Both towns combined have a population of around 900. Our high school this year has a total of 63 students in the top four grades.

We receive a lot of generous donations from individuals in the area. Also receive funeral memorial contributions from family members of deceased veterans who had made the trip with us in the past. Our local Mason's group has raised and donated over $100,000 to us in the past three years. We have raffles, breakfasts, 5K runs, etc. I had a  little  kindergarten student donate $75 to our Honor Flight  after she sold lemonade on a Saturday last  month. It is really remarkable where the money comes from!"..." Our Honor Flight hub was started by Mike Kastle. He is now the hub coordinator for the Parsons High School Honor Flight."

(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) blogs coffey dc honor honor flight kansas memorial national park service photography southern travel washington wwii Thu, 15 Nov 2018 13:45:00 GMT
RAIN OR SHINE: CENTRAL MISSOURI HONOR FLIGHT 11/5/2018 20181105-IMG_4808RAIN OR SHINEArlington National Cemetery on a rainy morning in November

What a treat!  Arlington National Cemetery in the rain on a Fall Day with the foliage turning. Riding along with Central Missouri Honor Flight with my photo colleagues William Greenblatt Photography and Angela Barnes Bennett.  We are no strangers to rain and neither are our veterans.  We're just hoping the cameras make it through the day.  

IMG_4832IMG_4832 20181105-IMG_5079Angela Barnes Bennett and Bill Greenblatt (UPI) at the Air Force Memorial. Cameras are in fact waterproof!
Out of the heavy rain, a group of students showed up and greeted the veterans as we were walking to the Tomb of the Unknowns. As it turns out, Nanci Banks Bush a guide and fellow member of the "Guild of Professional Tour Guides of DC" had been tracking our progress from the airport on Facebook and met us there and later at the Iwo Jima Memorial. She has been recruited to DCA Volunteers Honor Flight as a volunteer guide to hubs.

20181105-IMG_4948Nanci Banks Bush IMG_4852Students gather to greet veterans in the pouring rain.

20181105-IMG_4879Changing of the GuardsVeterans and Guards participate in the rain while changing of Guard ensues. Water drops are all over my lens so a period of Van Gogh which I will not bore you with appears.

On the way out of the Cemetery, we stopped by the Women in Military Service to America Memorial and checked the registry.  Our ladies were up to date.  And we stopped at the Sea Bee Memorial to make a few photographs.  Missouri seems to have "customized" the tour as we make stops dependent on the individual veterans.  

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 A brief stop at Iwo Jima to photograph our marines.

At the Lincoln, we assembled for a group photograph with the veterans facing the Lincoln  with their back to the reflecting pool and Washington Monument.  The reverse image with veterans back to the Lincoln is in my opinion cluttered with the many tourists on the steps along with the columns behind them makes for a confusing image.  In "Herding Cats", this is the "money shot."  It summarizes all your efforts which are visually supported by the vast Washington Mall behind you.  It also leaves room for type in your print and social media efforts. 
20181105-IMG_4990Veterans pose with the big scenic in the background.

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Michelle Sprye and Steve Paulsell worked on fifty five etchings (rubbings from the Wall) and I will soon have Michelle write a guest post how these unique gifts are done.  Missouri is the only hub that I know that does this and it's a great souvenir especially as Honor Fight is ramping up with Vietnam Veterans.

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The WWII Memorial 

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(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) books dc dc photo book flight honor honor flight memorial national park service photography travel veteran washington wwii Mon, 12 Nov 2018 17:38:08 GMT
Super Saturday October 20, 2018 20181010-IMG_1710Paradise

This has been an excellent year for Honor Flight coverage as I developed the theme with last year's book and so have been covering in a more disciplined fashion.  By riding along with hubs during the week and covering Saturdays at the WWII Memorial, I've accumulated enough material for a new publication. This Super Saturday was a extraordinary as I was able to revisit and update hubs in different locations.  

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(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) Sat, 27 Oct 2018 15:51:31 GMT
Quarters One, Twilight Tattoo and Army Salute Awards 20181015-IMG_3541Jeff Miller and Earl MorseHonor Flight has taken all of us for a wonderful ride and this night was no exception.

If you love parades, this was not to be missed. This day long event was a salute to civilians who have made significant contributions to veterans. Jeff and Earl received the award along with Jaspen Boothe, Founder and President of Final Salute and Ted Leonsis, Owner of the Washington Capitals, Wizards and Mystics. For our boys, it was a daylong trek around Fort Meyers, a tour of the Pentagon and laying a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknowns with an Honor Flight in attendance!  Go Team!

General Mark A. Milley knows how to put on a party! He has the troops and talents to display the Army's best and he spared neither in his praise of the awardees.  Dave Nichols, friend Laura, my wife June (a long-standing Honor Flight widow) and new CEO Meredith Rosenbeck, board member Theresa Werner and friend and Gottaswing dancer James Martin, and John W. Mccaskill of the Allied Airmen all arrived early. We had time before the party to admire the view from the hilltop adjacent to the Milley residence known as "Quarters One". I've been up there for news assignments but never had time to take in the Olympian view of DC.  Has to be great for fireworks! 

20181015-IMG_3479View from Park adjacent to Quarters One

The houses in this little community are beautiful red brick 19th Century style and meticulously maintained.  "Honor Flight" folks got a special tour of the General's souvenir room. He's got quite a collection of memorabilia from various campaigns, tours of duty and family items as his father fought in WWII and landed in Normandy. Naturally Honor Flight is close to his heart.  He is the Army's Chief of Staff and its best salesman.  He is also a man who's "on time" and used to getting the troops going so we were shepherded out of the house and bused over to Comney Hall for the ceremony.

IMG_3519Earl Morse and General MilleyA trim Earl Morse still fits in his uniform presenting General Milley with an Honor Flight Campaign Coin IMG_3494General Milley and Chairman Dave "Sparky" Nicols IMG_3513General Milley with Japanese sword used for suicide. He gave a vivid demonstration.


20181015-IMG_3535Six musical and dress representations of historically significant stages of the Army were presented musically and accompanied by occasional musket fire.

20181015-IMG_3542Six musical and dress representations of historically significant stages of the Army were presented musically and accompanied by occasional musket fire. IMG_3536Six musical and dress representations of historically significant stages of the Army were presented musically and accompanied by occasional musket fire. IMG_3543Six musical and dress representations of historically significant stages of the Army were presented musically and accompanied by occasional musket fire.


IMG_3557I would be just guessing that 400 talented musicians gathered for this event and stand at attention with Jeff and Earl.

After the ceremony, General Milley who's even better at "herding cats" than I got everyone back aboard the buses and to his house where an assembled group of musicians played a set of songs chosen to suit each honoree.  We gathered around and spent an hour listening to a group of talented musicians who at the end of the evening each spoke a bit about themselves. Lot of talent!

IMG_3613IMG_3613 IMG_3616Earl and Clarice Morse hug as the band plays a special piece of music dedicated to Earl's accomplishments.

IMG_3612Jeff Miller

It was a wonderful evening and an opportunity to make the Honor Flight cause more widely known.  It was also great fun.  General Milley is quite a character and knows how to show his appreciation for anything that supports the Army mission.  

(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) A. dc honor Mark memorial Milley One photography Quarters Tattoo travel washington wwii Wed, 17 Oct 2018 02:01:25 GMT
On the Mall with Blue Ridge Honor Flight: Saturday 10/6/2018 20181003-IMG_163620181003-IMG_1636
So I was asked and honored to make this picture of Blue Ridge Honor Flight this year.  Blue Ridge was on the cover of the new HONOR FLIGHT book which came out recently and this is a new angle.  I decided to meet them at the airport and had time to spend with some of DCA's lovely volunteers--always a treat!

First off the plane was Gold Star mother Anne Adkins who was greeted by Greg Locher with a bouquet of flowers. She traveled with Blue Ridge all day--an interesting new event in Honor Flight history.  

Blue RidgeA Gold Star MotherAnne Atkins traveling with Blue Ridge Honor Flight gets a bouquet of flowers from Greg Locher of American Airlines. Blue Ridge is going to try for a Gold Star Mother on every trip.

After that, it was all business with half a day fog delay to make up and so the remaining greeters cheered the veterans and hustled them to the buses. We were off directly to the Lincoln Memorial where the veterans staged on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial and were given ceremonial coins by General _____________ and were greeted by the Marine Corps Drill Team.

IMG_1523Blue RidgeMarybeth Burns really runs Blue Ridge Honor Flight. She's determined and spunky IMG_1523Blue RidgeVeterans deplane at DCA IMG_1523Blue Ridgefind out who this woman is IMG_1523Blue RidgeLauren Burycka is a frequent flyer and I am delighted to see her all over the Mall. IMG_1523Blue RidgeJeff Miller of Blue Ridge Honor Flight IMG_1523Blue RidgeDCA Volunteers gather for a snap. I know lauren burycka and laura nelson-bolick both frequent flyers as Laura's vest will testify. IMG_1523Blue RidgeDCA Volunteers 20181006-_DSC2510CL Collard on the right photographing for Blue Ridge

Two for OneAs I was walking over to make the Blue Ridge Photo, I grabbed a photo of Hudson Valley.

20181006-_DSC2487Vietnam Veterans MemorialMany Vietnam Veterans on this trip. Personally I find it the most moving of Memorials

IMG_1523Blue RidgeGeneral ________and ___________ 20181006-_DSC2646Delighted to get the board of Blue Ridge Honor Flight together with Senator Dole. Serendipity! _DSC2576There were three WWII Veterans on the flight and they were briefly honored at the North Carolina Pillar.

JUST ONE MORE (actually two)

Cynthia Collard and I spent a long and pleasant day photographing Blue Ridge together and I had the opportunity to see she and her DCA colleague outfox the fox.  They smooched Senator Dole from both sides leaving him flustered and laughing.  It was a great moment and one of those that make it particularly attractive.

20181003-IMG_1663Outfoxing the Fox!Cynthia Collard and I spent a long and pleasant day photographing Blue Ridge together and I had the opportunity to see she and her DCA colleague outfox the fox.  They smooched Senator Dole from both sides leaving him flustered and laughing.  It was a great moment and one of those that make it particularly attractive. 20181003-IMG_1668Outfoxing the Fox!Cynthia Collard and I spent a long and pleasant day photographing Blue Ridge together and I had the opportunity to see she and her DCA colleague outfox the fox.  They smooched Senator Dole from both sides leaving him flustered and laughing.  It was a great moment and one of those that make it particularly attractive.


(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) ashville blue dc flight hendersonville honor memorial nc photography ridge travel washington Fri, 12 Oct 2018 02:13:49 GMT
DCA HONOR FLIGHT VOLUNTEERS: Weather Or Not! 10/06/2018 20181003-IMG_1412DCA Honor Flight VolunteersGathering to welcome veterans on a Saturday AM 20181003-IMG_141820181003-IMG_1418

A foggy morning on the East Coast delayed Blue Ridge Honor Flight for more than three hours but during that time, we had the chance to greet Hudson Valley Honor Flight. The usual DCA Volunteers and several hundred greeters were on hand and propped with signs, flags and enthusiastic cheering.  100 veterans and as many guardians poured off the plane to a cheering sea of volunteers which went down the gate through the terminal and up to the buses. 

Greetings Greetings Alan Lewis and Honor Flight book!

IMG_1483The GateCheering crowds gather around veterans from Hudson Valley New York Honor Flight as they come off the plane. IMG_1464Cheering crowds welcome vets

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Gold StarA Gold Star mother receives a bouquet of flowers as she arrives in DC. Presented by Greg Locher of American Airlines and arranged by Jeff Miller of Asheville, NC's Blue Ridge Honor Flight

(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) asheville blue dc flight hendersonville honor memorial photography ridge travel veteran washington wwii Thu, 11 Oct 2018 22:53:54 GMT
Honor Flight Super Saturday Sept 29, 2018 HERDING CATS

San Diego

20180929-_DSC1889San DiegoThey kept spreading out and I kept pushing the tourists back. Sharp as a tack

IMG_1374Lanie with Veteran IMG_1376Donna Hester IMG_1379Donna Hester and vets
This Saturday started off with Honor Flight San Diego. Dave Smith and  volunteers and guardians flew in with 100 veterans for three days. The photograph just kept getting wider as veterans arrived and I kept pushing the crowds back towards 17th Street. 

Twin Cities' Jerry Keyser on the other hand keeps his 85 person group compact in this little area by the Atlantic.   He sets it up using a megaphone and is very precise about placement.  By correctly placing the vets and standing on the wall to make the photo, you can get the WWII Memorial, the fountains, the Atlantic Arch, the Minnesota Column and the Lincoln Memorial in the image.

Twin Cities

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Columbus was next and as there was a ceremony going at my preferred location, Susan Barr and Cindy Kanwar worked with me to squeeze everyone into the frame. The photo lacks balance but it derives substance from all the lovely people.


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_DSC1910Collier-Lee Honor Flight
Susan BarrSusan is on her 273rd flight and I can't imagine that she doesn't hold the record for most attended.

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Back on Homeland Drive, our new board member Theresa Werner and James Martin were dancing up a storm with their fellow Gottaswing dancers. Theresa has just been appointed to the board of Honor Flight and she brings energy, enthusiasm and local knowledge to Honor Flight. She is a researcher for PBS News Hour, former President of the National Press Club and in her spare time works for Virgin Airways at Dulles which nets her free travel. She is also a bus captain for Honor Flight Chicago and does frequent stints as a tour guide for other hubs.  

IMG_1361IMG_1361 She and friend James manage to get around town faster than an Honor Flight with a police escort. I have seen them at Reagan in the AM, the WWII Memorial later in the AM and Dulles in the afternoon for dancing at the departures. Theresa and James formed "Gottaswing in Support of Honor Flight" several years ago and are frequent fliers literally and figuratively.  He is an airline pilot and she works for Virgin Airways and so they are also constantly in motion.

Theresa WernerOur newest board member delivers the "honor flight rash"   _DSC2038_DSC2038 IMG_1359IMG_1359 _DSC2036_DSC2036

BWI Brownies

IMG_1358BWI BROWNIESKeith Gentry and John Jefferson in front of double row of buses on Homeland Drive.


I had a chance to wander up to Korea and Vietnam and make some photographs.

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Between Korea and WWII Memorial, I got chatting with this couple from Collier-Lee Honor Flight and she showed me this newspaper clipping about her uncles death in WWII she's been carrying since she was a little girl.

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For more photographs on this Super Saturday, visit the website


(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) blogs books dc dc photo book honor honor flight memorial national park service photography travel washington wwii Thu, 04 Oct 2018 15:08:14 GMT


Deb Wickerham with Flag City Honor Flight rolled in with four buses and lots of Ohioans waiting at the WWII Memorial. Everyone proceeded to wander the WWII Memorial, interviews and pictures.  


The five brothers Nighswander all served and seemed happy to be hanging out together on a beautiful day.  I found them down by the pool and made a few frames as they were being interviewed by Dan Cummings who is a master news anchor.  His interviews are friendly and casual and the veterans feel comfortable with him.

_DSC2217Dan Cummings Interviewing the five Nighswander brothers

20181002-_DSC220920181002-_DSC2209 20181002-_DSC2204Deb Wickerham in middleOhio veterans stand by the Ohio pillar.

Mission Barbecue had a tent set up and it was nice to sit and have a hot meal on the Mall. The weather was perfect.



Most of the veterans were pretty healthy and so as we walked up to Korea, I was able to make some nice frames at the Korean Veterans Memorial.  These Fall afternoons are quiet and the Mall is relatively peaceful. For more of paradise go to the web folder below and lets remember usage is for Honor Flight personnel only!

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(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) dc Findlay honor memorial Ohio photography travel washington wwii Wed, 03 Oct 2018 11:48:45 GMT
Central Missouri Honor Flight: A Day in the Life I've had the opportunity to ride along with Central Missouri a few times. Rain or shine, it's been a picture perfect experience. I have gotten to know the regular volunteers and have found that Honor Flight forms deep friendships.  

IMG_1036Greeting Central MissouriOn this particular morning David Benbennick and Christine Boltz from DCA were on the line greeting veterans while 100 travelers cheered the veterans on.  IMG_1024The fellows on the outside came looking for a vet from Miller County and found two

Steve and Sharon Paulsell are the Director and Vice-President. Mary Paulsell, Steve's sister is the President so it's a family affair. They've in turn enlisted their neighbors and co-workers and so it is really one big happy family. Each hub has its own rhythm and Central Missouri's is relaxed, low-key and personalized. 

20180923-IMG_1207Veterans and guardians at the WWII Memorial.

20180923-IMG_1305Sharon and Steve Paulsell IMG_1141Angela Barnes Bennett and IMG_1090Miller County residents wanted! IMG_1168Kevin MontFormer police officer and now driver, Kevin's experience with police caravans comes in handy. i see him everywhere as he is very popular with the hubs.

Speaking of rain or shine, I managed this photograph on a rainy Fall Day last year and we ducked into the downtown Air and Space Museum for an hour to wait it out.  

IMG_3194-2Constitution Avenue on a rainy day.



That personalization worked out when I was able to make this photograph in Arlington Cemetery last Fall. We stopped the bus on the side of the road in Arlington Cemetery and just the veterans from Centralia, Missouri  gathered for a small and very moving ceremony for their classmate Rodney Griffin.

20170522-IMG_0175_(1)20170522-IMG_0175_(1)National WWII MEMORIAL FROM JEWEL OF THE MALL
Central Missouri also brings their own photographers: the witty and talented Angela Barnes Bennett and a contemporary and fellow White House News Photographer, Bill Greenblatt, who works for UPI out of St. Louis. They are on every flight and it's nice to have such great company! 
20180923-IMG_1209Angela Barnes Barnett and William GreenblattMy photographic colleagues!  

Angela Barnes Barnett wrote a little piece after the last trip and you can tell that she was giddily tired when she wrote it.  It summarizes the the spirit of Central Missouri...with or without the deodorant.

"To the Honor Flight #55 crew,

Once again, men and women were brought together from every walk of life for the mission at hand. Boy did we laugh and oh how we cried. Ok, maybe I cried but whatever. From the ups and the downs of the unknown to the wonders of the powers of something bigger than all of us, it came together like a dream. Ok, a sweaty dream, but whatever, just go with this!

Upon my arrival at the hotel WITHOUT my camera I knew the day was going to be a treat! We departed Columbia and arrived in STL with a little rain to rid us of our beauty. We landed in DC with a jolt, like a jolt out of our seats upon our very swift landing. We weathered, LITERALLY, the DC climate like storm troopers taking on…. well, something really HOT! There were changes and ups and downs, figuratively and literally speaking, and the team persevered like troopers taking on the HOT! (Don’t try to figure out the HOT unless you didn’t wear your deodorant like suggested).

To the #55 team, it was amazing to watch each and every one of you make the day happen. I don’t think I have ever seen a group more attentive and happy, and FUNNY! There was not a guardian, new or experienced who did not have a smile on their faces or a gentle hand to lend to their veterans. 

Stephanie Roberson, I believe you get the award for the most amazing, tolerant, gentle, kind, compassionate, guardian of the day. I loved you before today but watching you in action confirmed that you are the real deal.  Lynn Nichols and Kathryn Wilkerson, watching the two of you offer assistance with no reservation to the task at hand with the most genuine sincerity anyone could offer showed your hearts and souls and dedication to the mission. Dr. Tom, you stepped in ready to take on whatever came your way with kindness and compassion that was not lost on the crew. Your nursing skills were excellent and again, above and beyond. 

Suzie Ray Naeger, although you were the most boring seat mate on the plane, you showed me what amazing listening skills one could have! You “talked” your way through the day with the best attitude one could have ever had under the circumstances. Mike Cox, from my brief, weird “white bus” coo coo chanting trader ride to Iwo Jima, you and Anicka Oyen were the team players of the day, especially after Anika and I got to watch the flag raising at Iwo Jima. 

Dave Williams, I am not sure how I roped you into the T-shirt change job but you handled it like a king. And even though I had a horror nightmare high school drama dream about you, Stephanie Williams your dedication to the veterans is visibly amazing. I am always taken aback by your compassion. The two of you make a great team!

Traci Putnam, thank you for holding the crazy blue bus together. Trash bags and tooth brushes and accountability for Gary Blackmore and his peeps is what holds us together! Speaking of GB, your heart and soul and dedication is a piece of the puzzle that makes everything work. Your dedication feeds into all of us. AND, thank goodness Angie Regan was there for some hand holding and positive reinforcement when it was needed the most, even though she stole Kirby’s seat on the plane! AND, speaking of Kirby Baumert, are there words for the best wheelchair captain ever? 

Carol Grant Kyd, there has never been a time that your cheers for our Mid-Missouri veterans are not heard. Your passion is felt by all and I love it. Alice, it was beautiful watching your first Honor Flight experience sink into your soul. 

To my girl Amy Hill, watching you take your #1 and #2 was a treat. You were so lucky to have had such a great veteran protecting you from my wrath!! I love you dearly and am so glad you finally got to check the CMHF off your bucket list. Hope you get to add a few more checks in the future!

David Wallingford, I sit back in awe of your selfless efforts to lend a hand and a strong back to the veterans on the “trip." The way you “fall” all over yourself to get things done melts my heart. You are truly a gift to the mission.

Eric Farr, my seat mate for the bus who politely juggles all of my gear, listens to me sing, talk and talk some more, you are a delight. Thank you for your ever lasting patience. Jeff Voss who is always across the isle on the bus, thank you for holding literally everything I throw in your lap, and for remembering my camera, and my bag and whatever else I left behind every time we moved. You are the best team player.

Sharon Paulsell, my goodness! You roll through each and every trip with a smile and the most hilarious stories, comments and commands like “don’t fall asleep so read your folders or something!” Trip after trip you keep our little blue crew (as well as the entire crew) on task, well informed and in line like no other. The humor you add to the day is what makes the blue bus the best bus! 

And to Steve Paulsell, our captain, king cheese, red shirt wearing leader, you did it again! First, I appreciate you looking out for me because you must think I am only 4’ tall and can’t reach the overhead compartment. That was awesome! Not only do you expect each of us to maintain a high standard, you show us through example how we should be. Your dedication and love for the veterans is felt through each one of us and with you it is literally "all about the veterans.” Thank you for dedicating your soul to this project. It would not be the same without your guidance. 

Once again, my heart is full. Super lucky to be a part of the team."

Honor Flight

(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) central dc honor honor flight memorial missouri national park service photography travel washington wwii Wed, 03 Oct 2018 11:42:25 GMT
DCA HONOR FLIGHT VOLUNTEERS The Washington Metro area has stepped up to the plate for Honor Flight. DCA HONOR FLIGHT VOLUNTEERS are the heart of the Honor Flight operation as they have turned every landing and departure into a festive and welcoming occasion. There are three airport organizations--Honor Flight DCA, Honor Flight Dulles and Honor Flight BWI which get the bands, post the schedules, make the signs, and keep track of the hundreds of incoming and outgoing flights. I happened to be there both at the busy Terminal A on a Saturday and for a more subdued but equally gratifying hub arrival at Terminal C, the original DCA.

WELCOME HOME! A DCA Volunteer greets an incoming Badger Honor Flight IMG_0810IMG_0810

Fifty percent of the 132 Honor Flights come in through Reagan and are greeted by bands, scouts, cheerleaders, relatives and passengers from other flight who join the festivities.  This is all coordinated between three terminals (arrivals and departures), airlines, charter companies and the TSA. They manage to get several hundred persons on an almost daily basis  through security to greet the Veterans at the gate.


Greeters!On a Saturday morning, there are several hundred greeters, bands, drill teams, scouts and the like o meet flights as they come in.
Like everything else in Honor Flight, the group just evolved with no approvals asked or granted. They somehow manage to get TSA to cooperate with Honor Flight and so get bands, instruments, cheerleaders. mimes, signs...all the stuff of TSA nightmare...through security and out to the gate. To my astonishment, there was a paper work problem yesterday so a TSA agent actually escorted five of us out to the gate and waited until the veterans were in to escort us back. I've been traveling a long time and never thought I'd see cooperation from TSA. Honor Flight has a lot of fans and more of them were outside the airport as we made our way to the buses.

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Outside the terminal, security guards greeted the Veterans and there were announcements that an Honor Flight had landed on all the terminal speakers so travelers could gather to greet the veterans at the gate. Our little group of ten people grew to a hundred in a few minutes.  

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DCA Tour Guides

Within DCA, there is another group of volunteers who ride along with the hubs and act as Tour Guides. Others take a day and ride along with the hub as a guardian. Doesn't sound glamorous but it will change your day and your outlook. And you will make an impact that reverberates throughout society.  

DCA Tour Guides and VolunteersNancy Griffith and Alexis McDonald will go with the hubs for a day and help out either as guardians or tour guides. IMG_0818Maria Temiquel (left) IMG_0826IMG_0826
The interesting thing is that when asked how all this happened, Dave Nichols, Chairman of Honor Flight said he had no idea. And as a witness over the past thirteen years, I've watched people come together, build organizations and websites, share information and several hundred volunteers engaged and working with no organization or meeting.  Cool!

(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) dc honorflight mall memorial photography travel volunteer washington wwii Thu, 27 Sep 2018 16:19:16 GMT
Honor Flight at the WWII Memorial: September 15, 2018 20180912-IMG_0296Getting ready to cheer

With seven Honor Flight hubs inbound and a couple of marathons in progress, I decided to get to the WWII Memorial and let the hubs come to me. This gave me a few minutes to talk to everyone, make a few useful photos for each hub to use, exchange tips, schedule events and look forward to a great Fall Season.  While this was not an official "Super Saturday", there were over six hundred veterans plus guardians on the Mall. Each flight has different customs and ceremonies and I am always on the watch for something new. 


Unique among the days's many touching moments was Florida's Rick Asper presenting Senator Dole with a piece of the granite from the quarry from which the WWII Memorial was taken and engraved with his name.  It's a rare piece and elegantly presented. You'll notice the young woman to the left behind Rick who is doing live social media with her husband. I think it's great that more and more flights are traveling with social media teams who produce photography and media livestream.  

20180912-IMG_0427 Rick Asper presents granite gift.Carved and cut stone from the same quarry as the WWII Memorial was made.


20180912-IMG_0399Flags of our HeroesSouth Florida paraded their "Flags of our Heroes" program around the Memorial.
Rhode Island Fire Chiefs Honor Flight

George Farrell and crew were in next with a quick ceremony and a photograph. I always get the sense with the Fire Chiefs that they are ready for anything.  Their enthusiasm and teamwork impress and is probably the reason they are Chiefs.  

20180912-IMG_0285RI Fire Chiefs 20180912-IMG_0278George Farrell lines up veterans 20180912-IMG_0279RI Fire Chiefs


John Liszewski travels all the way from the Eastern Shore and his final mode of transportation is sometimes the metro with his display items in a small cart.  Dedication!  

20180912-IMG_0250John Liszewski A regular from the Eastern Shore, John carries a flask and other gear to keep the veterans amused


20180912-IMG_0307Talons OutBobbie Bradlee and Lora Nelson Block IMG_0329RegularsBobbie Bradley and George Kerestes under the eagles! 20180912-IMG_0357Freedom Honor FlightCheryl Higgins and Teresa Larsen strategize over the day's schedule.

20180912-IMG_0649Flags of HonorRon Newsum and Senator Dole chat about the Flags of Honor Program.


I very much admire Senator Dole and try to emulate his persistence.  I always try to make one good frame of him when he is with the veterans.  The rest of the time I am practicing my photo skills with other peoples phones!

20180912-IMG_0513Senator Robert DoleHardest working man in town!

Paula Nelson's motto!  We were lucky and it seems that rain or shine, we always get by.  

IMG_0672Florence Who?Summing up the day!

(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) dc dc photo book Dole Flight Honor national park service photography Robert senator travel washington wwii Mon, 17 Sep 2018 20:53:45 GMT

IMG_0202Bagpiper leads veterans to Memorial Plaza

So a couple of weeks ago, I ran a blog post entitled "Piper Available" and Dana Vann and Pam Hawk Mow of Greater Layfayette Honor Flight chose J.R. MacArthur to set the tone for this 21st flight. I met him at the Memorial as he was getting ready and it's quite a getup and fortunately, his wife was there to straighten him out.

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We had a great little ceremony and were able to photograph not only the veterans and the guardians but also the veterans alone and finally the WWII veterans.  If you are looking for color on a gray day, a bagpiper is just the ticket

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Pam Hawk Mow and Dana Vann have lead twenty one Honor Flights and this coming October will be the last.  I hope they stay involved in Honor Flight as they have a lot to teach and would be valuable telling their stories at the Summit.  As Gold Star mothers, they have paid the ultimate price and we can learn from their courage!

Honor Flight West Central Florida

I just had time for a nice stroll up to the Lincoln where I met flight leaders April Dennis Currie and Bev Frey leading the flock to the group photograph.  My buddy Tammi Stieger was the photographer for the day so I just chatted with Bev and April and at the last moment ran over and made the picture.  

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20180908-IMG_0235Honor Flight West Central Florida

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After the group picture, everyone scattered to the Korea and Vietnam Memorials and I took the opportunity to make a few more images and headed back to the studio to edit.  

(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) dc flight honor memorial national park service photography travel washington wwii Tue, 11 Sep 2018 23:43:28 GMT
BUGLER AVAILABLE Ben Corner is an experienced Bugler looking for work at Honor Flight events and the like.  He's got a gift as I've heard him play. You can reach him to book a date at this email.

20180505-IMG_4185-2BUGLER AVAILABLEBen Corner

(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) flight honor memorial musician photography travel veteran washington Mon, 03 Sep 2018 01:36:58 GMT
PIPER AVAILABLE! J.R. Archer, Piper ExtraordinaireJ.R. Archer leds Honor Flight of the Ozarks into the WWII Memorial.

I stopped by the WWII Memorial to photograph Honor Flight of the Ozarks and while waiting, met the bagpiper J.R. Arthur, LCdr, USN (Ret) (and in another season Santa) who to all appearances and attributes was born to be a bagpiper.  As we were both a bit early, I watched him don his gear which took a good 30 minutes as there are swords, knives, buckles, belts, flags, and other items which need to be put on in sequence.

IMG_0029Ornamental SwordsGetting his outfit together is no easy matter as it consists of probably twenty items! IMG_0029Ornamental SwordsGetting his outfit together is no easy matter as it consists of probably twenty items! IMG_0029Ornamental SwordsGetting his outfit together is no easy matter as it consists of probably twenty items!
When Honor Flight of the Ozarks arrived, they unexpectedly got off the buses right in front of the Memorial. Serendipity being the rule of thumb, I was able to get one of the more memorable photographs of the year as our merry piper lead them into the Memorial plaza. I don't know if any of it was planned but it worked out nicely.  J.R. also has a extraordinarily loud voice so I was able to use him to organize the group.  

J.R. Arthur's email is if you are looking to enhance your photographic experience.  He is a guarantee that your images will be a bit richer and your veterans entertained. He's a talker! I enquired of him as to his rates and they are reasonable. He can do more than one flight a day and suggested if he did more than one flight a day, he could further discount.   



A group of Navy Officers were being promoted and for some reason their reward was a nice hot run around the Mall.  We got in touch with then and they sang for the Honor Flight veterans. It's wonderful that people in DC recognize Honor Flight and do their best to make the experience meaningful.


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(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) dc honor memorial photography travel washington wwii Thu, 30 Aug 2018 22:48:51 GMT
Marine Corps Silent Drill Team August 8, 2018 Marine Corps Silent Drill TeamThe Marine Corps Silent Drill Team perform on the plaza of the Lincoln Memorial. If you watch closely, just before they begin throwing rifles, they do a little "sleight of hand" and take off the bayonets. Phew!

As Honor Flight inevitably shifts its focus to Korea and Vietnam, the plaza of the Lincoln Memorial has become a great place to stage a show for the veterans.  The Marine Corps Silent Drill Team has been out for the last few Chicago trips.  The first time I photographed it,  I mentioned to Mary Pettinato that it was a shame that the background was cluttered with tourists.  Presto....she has cleared the background of pedestrians by having guardians stretch out ropes and ask people to stay to the sides.  

AwesomenessMary Pettinato, Vincent Wilson and Theresa Werner pose for a picture after a well-orchestrated visit to the Lincoln, Vietnam and Korea Memorials complete with ice cream handed out to the vets

Anne Howington and Theresa WernerAnne is a nurse who travels from Tennessee to Chicago for HFC flights. Theresa Werner is the organizer along with boyfriend James of "Honor Flight in support of HFC" which raised $10000.00 this year in addition to dancing at numerous events. Jenny Nunn BrawleyJenny is the "Flight Coordinator" for HFC and managed to entice General Colin Powell to two HFC events as well as organize the 275 people on the trip.






(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) books chicago dc dc photo book flight honor marines memorial photography travel veteran washington wwii Fri, 10 Aug 2018 14:04:02 GMT
HONOR FLIGHT CHICAGO WITH GENERAL POWELL 20180808-_DSC1040General Colin PowellJust arriving at the Memorial

Honor Flight Chicago was out in force yesterday with one hundred Korean veterans and easily twice as many Guardians, Medics, Police Escorts, Water Bearers, 14 Radio Wearers, and Photographers. I met them at the Air Force Memorial. Most of the guardians are regulars so everything is very precise.

When told General Powell was going to meet us at the WWII Memorial, I took a cab over to meet him.  I have found it helpful to explain to dignitaries what will be happening and try to form a course of action to allow them to shake as many hands as possible. If they are comfortable and you provide an exit strategy, they'll be back. General Powell is a regular and Chicago has been lucky to get him as he is often traveling.

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Having worked with him before, we allowed the veterans to start assembling for the ceremony and followed them in. This was our most successful photo voyage to date as he was able to shake the hand of EVERY veteran and quite a few guardians and active service members.

Hence our historic "fist bump"!  

As I am not a veteran, I don't feel comfortable with saluting but in the photo corps, it's the "bump" and the bump it was!  Steven Pearson caught it and it is now my profile picture.  Thank you Steven Pearson!

@Steven Pearson 2018 General Powell and I "fist bump" after a successful photo round with several hundred people. Fast pace with many pictures.

As we were leaving, he paused under the Eagles for a minute and looked back on the ceremony.  Looked like he was thinking of blowing off the day...interesting...  

Hmmm....I wonder if he'd like to be a guardian?

(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) chicago Colin dc dignitaries flight honor jewel mall memorial of Powell the travel veterans wwii Thu, 09 Aug 2018 15:00:54 GMT
Senator Bob Dole June 9, 2018 20180609-DSC_947420180609-DSC_9474

I went down to the Memorial yesterday to visit with Senator Dole.  The last time I saw him was with Jeff Miller in December when he received the Congressional Gold Medal of Honor at the Capitol.  He was then surrounded by a "bipartisan" group:  Donald Trump, Mike Pence, Nancy Pelosi, Chuck Schumer etc... Both sides of the political isle filled the Capitol Dome for the event. 

Today he was looking relaxed in khakis. He spent four hours greeting and posing with veterans, tourists, and generally anyone who came by.  I have been working with him on the WWII Memorial for the last sixteen years. He supported my presence on the site during construction and over the years has been very supportive to Honor Flight. That would be an understatement!  

When we gathered for the first Summit, he was there.  He cut the first TV spot for Honor Flight and helped make other footage available for other Honor Flight productions.  At his law firm where he is called "The Boss", his "rainmaking speeches" often turn into Honor Flight pitches. He is relentless.

I have been at a couple of gatherings where he has been asked to talk about politics only to watch him immediately stray over to his favorite subject:  "Honor Flight."  Ask him a question about ice cream and he'll tell you about Honor Flight.  Mention the traffic and he'll tell you about Honor Flight.  He is by far the most resilient and determined individual I know.  I hope a bit of it rubs off.


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(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) dc dole honor memorial miller morse photography travel washington wwii Sun, 10 Jun 2018 13:24:56 GMT
Honor Flight Chicago 6/6/2018 Honor Flight ChicagoRob Williamson and I made this photograph today with the help of the 100 plus volunteers who kept the background clear. Great day and ice cream right on the Lincoln Memorial Plaza. Living in Paradise!

Fooled 'em again.  Rob Williamson and I with the help of all one hundred plus volunteers to keep the area clear were able to make this photograph just before the Drill Team arrived.  It was a spectacular day with wonderful clouds, a great breeze and amiable vets and volunteers.  I am thinking of entering this photograph in the prestigious "Herding Cats" contest held every year.

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(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) dc honor memorial photography travel washington wwii Sun, 10 Jun 2018 13:24:31 GMT
Honor Flight West Central Florida 6-5-2018 A beautiful day and in need of a walk I headed down to the Lincoln Memorial where I finally had the opportunity to photograph Honor Flight West Central Florida.  Bev Frey and April Dennis and I always see each at the Summit every years but never get together on the Mall so this was special.  With red flag in hand, Bev and Matt their photographer lead the group out on to the Lincoln Memorial Plaza and began to set up the group shot. I love watching...especially as I am not "herding cats."

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Tami Stieger was photographing for Florida so I was free to wander and chat. I am really a better chatterer than I am a photographer and I love talking to veterans but also the volunteers. Their stories of how they got involved in Honor Flight are always cool and they are routinely cool people.  The guardians and volunteers make it all work and I always marvel at the enormous amount of energy and organization that goes into an Honor Flight beginning with "follow the orange flag."  


20180605-_DSC877520180605-_DSC8775 I am beginning to collect a series on wheelchair repairs at the Lincoln.  I think by the next Summit, I'll have fleshed out my collection. Note the snazzy fluorescent yellow pain.  Easy to find and a racy color. There was a short period in Honor Flight's history where one of the electric scooters manufacturers got involved with Honor Flight.  It ended quickly as the vets when given the choice of the "rabbit" or the "turtle" always pushed the rabbit and terrorized the Mall.  Good stuff. One guy ran over Senator Dole's foot.  That was pretty classic...and also ended the brief life of the scooter in Honor Flight history.  Now everyone carries their own chairs and Missouri has custom banners, Chicago has stenciled backs. And when you look underneath the bus and see the rows of chairs, you realize just how driven Honor Flight is to get veterans to see the Memorials.



Getting my 10,000 steps in, I walked both to the Lincoln and Korea Memorials photographing a lot of veterans whose guardian was a son or daughter.  Hard to make a bad picture!


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I noticed groups of orange shirts appearing from the path that leads to the WWII Memorial and started down that way only to find myself chatting with Deb Wickenham of Flag City Honor Flight.  She also had the Mission Barbecue truck and tent set up for lunch and much for the calories I walked off.  Nice chat at lunch with a fellow who was keeping his guardian on guard!

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And as I walked the final couple of hundred yards to the WWII Memorial Plaza, nine Honor Flight buses appeared within the space of fifteen minutes and so did several groups of school children who all seemed to know they should line up to greet the veterans and so they did.  

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Happy BirthdayThis fellow was accompanied by his daughter who's birthday it was. Nice way to spend some time!

More to come...Chicago is on its way in and they don't make days like this anymore so lets take advantage of it!  Living in Paradise!

(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) dc honor memorial photography travel washington wwii Wed, 06 Jun 2018 12:50:55 GMT
SUPER WEDNESDAY HONOR FLIGHT 5_23_2018 _DSC8514Three large Honor Flights on Homeland Drive
I was delighted to be invited by Scott Knauf to visit with Upper Peninsula Honor Flight. I headed down to the WWII Memorial thinking it would be a slow day but when I arrived, the Mall was jammed with school children and tourists and Homeland Drive was packed with the buses. The Park Police came through and within minutes, the only buses left were from Northeast Indiana, Upper Peninsula and Old Glory Honor Flights. Liberty Phillips of "" took the initiative and directed the school children to line the walkway and so we had a great cheering entry into the Memorial. The Phillips sisters have been visiting with Honor Flights for sometime and certainly enhance the Memorial ambiance.

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_DSC8471_DSC8471 Sidney Wade and Senator Debbie Stabenow at the entry to the WWII Memorial

Senator Debbie Stabenow and reenactor Sidney Wade were on hand to greet veterans  I have always advocated more media on the flights and all the flights had great photographers and videographers and even live media throughout the day.  Great stuff! I've been looking through the images and video created to promote the hub websites and it's impressive.  

20180523-_DSC8474Honor FlightA lone veteran walks the gauntlet o of cheers, handshakes and hugs

20180523-_DSC8486Upper Peninsula Honor FlightAll the Honor Flights are getting more sophisticated. This group shot was transmitted with a logo within an hour of being taken.

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20180523-_DSC8517Upper Peninsula and Northeast IndianaScott Knauf, Brent Roddy , Ramprat Turiff and Liberty Phillips — with Liberty Phillips.



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As I wandered past the Lincoln to the Vietnam Wall, I literally walked into this image set up by Diane McDonald and Tami Stieger and grabbed a frame.  Moving along I ran across Drew McDonald and a couple of his guys do a quick tire change on a Wheelchair.  I am impressed! It's the constant "little things" that distinguish all the hubs.

_DSC8565PIT STOPOld Glory mechanics can change a wheelchair on the road. Preparation is 90 percent...

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The young soldier below was with her father who had composed a set of notes which she read by the name of everyone of his fallen comrades.  it was moving to see her do what he couldn't bring himself to do.

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20180523-_DSC857820180523-_DSC8578 Linda and Drew McDonaldThe President and Board of Old Glory Honor Flight.


(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) dc honor honor flight memorial photography travel veterans washington wwii Thu, 24 May 2018 00:54:21 GMT

As I stepped out of my cab, Honor Flight of ND/MN was just getting into formation for a photograph.  It was perfectly balanced between the fountains and their photographer was the first I have seen to use small studio lights on the veterans.  I am anxious to see how it works out.  

20180521-_DSC8335Honor Flight of MN/NDHonor Flight of MN/ND used to WDAY and has reformed. Good news!

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20180521-_DSC8393Wreaths left by Honor Flights
Yesterday, I was invited by David Phelps of Never Forgotten Honor Flight to visit with them at the WWII Memorial. They had given out DC PHOTO BOOK the night before and announced that I would be there so I ended up with lots of praise. It's nice to get feedback (particularly positive). It was apparent that the book served as an introduction to the day but also serve as a way to tell the story of the day.  I ended up conducting a small tour around the Memorial with two veterans and their guardians.  I forget what a great adventure working on the WWII Memorial was and this brought it back.  Living in Paradise!

20180521-_DSC8369Why Park Police Escorts!Two flights--one loading and the other unloading--take up Homeland Drive
The first thing Dave Phelps did was head over to the Eastern boundary (17th Street NW) of the WWII Memorial to make sure there weren't any "runners"!  Brian Ziegler and Jody McCain of Badger Honor Flight do the same and it's an excellent idea.  These veterans are an independent lot and it's nice to make sure we return with everyone! This caution and planning go into every aspect of the flight and watching the buses being unloaded, the wheelchairs placed, wheels locked, water and drinks out and guardians and medics in place, I am struck by everyone's efficiency as it's the key to a successful day.

20180521-_DSC8374David Phelps 20180521-_DSC8374David Phelps



Thanks for the time and the conversation.  The images are as always downloadable for personal use of Honor Flight participants.  

(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) dc honor korea memorial photography travel veteran vietnam washington wwii Tue, 22 May 2018 15:04:01 GMT
BADGER HONOR FLIGHT May 12, 2018 20180512-_DSC781920180512-_DSC7819

I took up Brian Ziegler and Jody Babler McClain of Badger Honor Flight on their invitation to do a "ride along".  Once at the airport, I had the great pleasure to see and photograph DCA Honor Flight Volunteers Lauren Burycka,Patricia HarrisMaria TemiquelCheryl RickardsNancy Griffith, ready to support the incoming Honor Flight Network hubs.  

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DCA Honor Flight is a dedicated and loving group of people who provide support both at the airport and as guides and volunteers the many incoming flights. Music, patriotism, cute kids...all the things a photographer needs to have an easy day in Paradise! 

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20180512-_DSC7901Water cannons salute the incoming Honor Flight

Every Honor Flight hub gets a water cannon salute upon arrival at Reagan, Dulles and BWI Airports.  The waiting band and crowds of excited groups is contagious and I like to photograph the veterans as they come up the ramp.  I believe that most of them are overwhelmed.

Veterans walk the ramp into a sea of fans, signs and music. Veterans walk the ramp into a sea of fans, signs and music. Veterans walk the ramp into a sea of fans, signs and music.


As we left the security area and headed to the buses, there was a long line of well-wishers with signs, handshakes and cheering to get our day going.  A great way to get started!  The buses were near the Western end of the terminal and the view of the Capitol and memorials is a great way to get oriented to the city. 


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Carol Coy (above left) retired from American Airlines and continues to organize and supervise Honor Flight arrivals and departures.  Kerem Bilge is a Naval Officer who is also a long-time guide for many of the Honor Flights and it's always nice to have him aboard.

Solving the Traffic ProblemBeretta and gang kept us moving throughout the day. And they kept us parking as well. Fun to watch! _DSC8232_DSC8232

My job is to hang around and take pictures and while I am taking pictures, it is both inevitable and enjoyable (I hope) that we get to know each other. And so I met Cat and Margaret, mother and daughter, who for Mothers Day weekend got together and volunteered with Badger Honor Flight.  That way they got to spend the holiday together productively.  They both said that volunteering gave weight to the Holiday.  Great Stuff! 


As Badger Honor Flight is ably covered by photographer Danni Downing, I have little to do but wander around and fill in the blanks.  And at my age, I always like to feel "close" to the medical team and they were gracious in allowing me to make a few images.  


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No matter what your condition, it seems Honor Flight is able to transport Veterans to see the Memorials. This Vet had been working for two years to get the paperwork for this trip and was determined to go despite the need for his leg to be straight out and elevated.  No man left behind.

Anyway you can!Turns out this veteran didn't mention that his leg had to be straight out and elevated all day. No problem. He apparently spent two years getting the paperwork from the VA that he needed to go on this flight so leg or no, he was determined to go.

On the Way to the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier 20180512-_DSC8083Father Daughter

Several Honor Flights at one time made for a full crowd at the Changing of the Guard ceremony at Arlington Cemetery.  With us was the Under Secretary of the VA and a one star woman general who was traveling anonymously and enjoying the day with her veteran.  There is plenty of opportunity on these flights to get to know folks and there is a camaraderie that makes for an excellent time.  

Brian and Under Secretary of the VA. Father/Son

20180512-_DSC807720180512-_DSC8077 Jody and Lauren

Veterans and visitors inspect the memorial to the Space Shuttle Challenger located behind the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.  

Our next stop was the Lincoln/Vietnam/Korea trio and I headed over to Vietnam to make some images. There were several Honor Flights and one was doing a flag folding ceremony by the three soldiers statue near the Vietnam.  The others were down by the wall visiting with fallen comrades and reviving memories by making etchings of the names inscribed in the stone.



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Over at Korea, the nineteen figures made for a stark contrast with the wheelchair bound veterans who were visiting.  I am always moved by these enormous and stark steel figures.


As the afternoon grew hotter, we finally arrived at the WWII Memorial.

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9/11 MemorialCoincidentally, there were two family members of victims of the 9/11 attack at the Memorial while we were there. Brian presented Danni Downing with a beautiful campaign coin as a token of her six years of service to Badger.


(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) dc honor memorial photography travel washington wwii Sun, 13 May 2018 14:54:45 GMT
Honor Flight Chicago May 9, 2018 Today, I met Honor Flight Chicago at the Air Force Memorial. We were quickly enroute to the WWII Memorial.  On hand were greeters George Kerestes, Barbara Hoernig Singleton and Sidney Wade who  greeted the veterans as they entered the Memorial.  Before he retired, George Kerestes used to come down to the WWII Memorial dressed in a suit and an American Flag tie.  I suppose it was inevitable that he holds the record for most time volunteered at the Memorial. 

20180509-_DSC7447Living HistorySidney Wade is part of a group of Living History Re-enactors who work with the National Park Service.

20180509-_DSC753820180509-_DSC7538 George Kerestesfore he retired, George Kerestes used to come down to the WWII Memorial dressed in a suit and an American Flag tie.  I suppose it was inevitable that he holds the record for most time volunteered at the Memorial.  _DSC7458_DSC7458

This is Honor Flight Chicago's eighty-fourth flight and my eightieth visit with them. Jenny Brawley was in charge of todays flight and her plans went very smoothly producing as always a good number of great moments! It's easy to make good images with great planning, great subjects and a picture perfect day.

Honor Flight ChicagoGroup photograph at WWII Memorial.

These are few images I grabbed of veterans during the cememony

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OrganizedMary Pettiinato, "Ace", Jenny Brawley and Vince Wilson relax after the eighty fourth successful WWII ceremony.

John Ptak, President of Honor Flight was pointing out the sites as we sped thought traffic to the Lincoln Memorial with National Park Policeman Larry Holmes at the lead.  Not only is the police escort good for getting where you are going, it's even better for parking when you get there. When you've heard a Park Police Escort say "Dave (Nicols)...where would you like those buses?" .... you know we are in good hands. As long as Honor Flight can make this arrangement for Escort Service, we should treasure it.

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At the Lincoln Memorial, we once again assembled on the Plaza and with the beautiful Reflecting Pool and Washington Monument in the background, the Marine Corp Silent Drill Team gave a great performance. The Marines lingered afterwards and as it turns out that one of our vets used to be on the Silent Drill Team.  

20180509-_DSC7629Marine Corps Silent Drill Team

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After the ceremony my assigned location for photography was the Lincoln Memorial where a few veterans and their escorts came up to see the view.  There were groups of students who approached all of the veterans up there and posed for pictures with them.  it was very touching and perhaps my favorite moment of the day.  

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(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) dc honor honor flight memorial photography travel washington wwii Thu, 10 May 2018 14:20:08 GMT
Honor Flight May 5, 2018 AM LIVING IN PARADISE:  AM

Saturday AM.  Court Van Sickler of Honor Flight San Antonio had started to arrange his group for a photo and so with little to do, I made these images.  I like this setup for groups because it contains a lot of symbolism...fountains, columns, Wall of Stars and the Lincoln Memorial which make the location obvious and lend the image weight.  It is also the best side for the lighting on the faces of the veterans so whether it's for presentation as a gift or for fund raising, it's worth getting a beautiful image.




While waiting for San Antonio to assemble, there was a young fellow nervously practicing his trumpet--obviously a big occasion.  He did a great job and I managed a portrait of him and his proud mom as they left the Memorial.  I keep making these small compositions of friends and family as they intrigue me. 

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I was delighted to see Laura Nelson Bolick who is a tireless volunteer temporarily sidelined by some knee work (obviously "sidelined" means different things to different people. She was guiding the Honor Flight San Antonio flight and I can't imagine her sidelined for anything.  George Kerestes is always on hand Wednesdays and Saturdays and has been visiting and volunteering at the Memorial for sixteen years with no option for retirement.  Vince Wilson along with James MartinTheresa Werner, Kit Stevenson and Jenny Brawley are the regular Gotta Swing group, a former Marine and both the most precise and polite gentleman I have met in a long time.  

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The Memorial was absolutely hopping at this point and San Diego arrived and we made a group photograph with their flag which in addition to being on the moon, is pretty extensively traveled.  

20180505-20180505-IMG_4245San Diego 20180505-20180505-IMG_4245San Diego

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The Usual Suspects!

IMG_4231Lauren BuryckaLauren Burycka made national news last week for carrying a veteran some seventy feet to his wife's grave in Arlington.

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I finally made it to Homeland Drive where the activity had been ramping up and the Allied Airmen's Preservation Society had rolled a 1940 Packard on the entryway for display.  John Liscweksi, Sid Wade, and C. Patrick McCourt were greeting veterans and the Gotta Swing dancers were dancing about the Mall or kissing veterans.  I was still wearing mine at dinner last night. 

IMG_4250Allied Airmens Preservation Association with 1940 Packard

(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) dc honor memorial photography travel washington wwii Sun, 06 May 2018 15:11:38 GMT
Stars and Stripes Honor Flight May 5, 2018 PM Honor Flight May 5, 2018 PM

It was nice to get out to the 9-11 Memorial to meet Stars and Stripes out of Wisconsin.  I usually miss them on Saturdays because they go the WWII Memorial last taking advantage of quiet afternoons to have the Memorial to themselves. With the size of their fleet, it's a wise idea. Stars and Stripes has always set big goals and always achieved record numbers whether thirty thousand people in Miller ballpark to watch the movie "Honor Flight" or the eight buses in two sets of four with close to four hundred people rolling around DC.  That's a lot of people to move in a day so it's ...Go big or Go Home!

Stars and Stripes has twenty board members and two hundred and fifty active volunteers. IMG_4345IMG_4345

Pentagon 9-11The Pentagon 9-11 is a beautiful Memorial and I had some time to make a few images. The trees have grown up quite a bit since my last visit and so it has a more finished feel. 

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We then sped over to Arlington Cemetery to watch the "Changing of the Guard" at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. We were escorted by Park Police Canine officer Robert Beretta and a colleague. Don't go near the car!

IMG_4353IMG_4353 IMG_4401Officer Robert Beretta and colleague.

IMG_4334IMG_4334 20180505-20180505-IMG_4365karen in Arlington Cemetery

And while there was another Honor Flight there, the event went smoothly.  The Old Guard is tradition bound and demands respect for their work.  I've seen them dress noisy civilians down and I would prefer not to get the treatment. 

Tomb of the Unknown SoldierArlington Cemetery

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At the Air Force Memorial, we happened upon Randy Fogle and Tudy Giordano of Honor Flight Dallas-Ft. Worth. I very much value my Honor Flight friends as they are all special people so it was a pleasure to introduce like-minded folks.  The Air Force Memorial is one of the most relaxing Memorials as invites you to sit back, relax and take in the magnificent views framed by the three metal contrails sweeping into the sky.  

Hub MeetingAt the Air Force Memorial, I had the opportunity to introduce Randy Fogle and Tudy Giordano Dallas Fort Worth Honor Flight to Paula Nelson. They were quickly comparing notes on airline ticketing. Randy and I went back to talking about reptiles in Texas.

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(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) dc honor memorial photography travel washington wwii Sat, 05 May 2018 21:00:00 GMT
Honor Flight: April 28,2018 Fourteen Honor Flights were in Washington, DC on this beautiful Spring and picture-perfect day! I first dropped by the WWII Memorial where I had the opportunity to show the new sample of the HONOR FLIGHT book to the "usual suspects" who are in the book. Honor Flight Syracuse was first in and they had a ceremnony with Honor Flight Maine.

In the end, I photographed both hubs separately and we managed a few nice images which I think will work both as a gifts and promotions for the veterans and hubs. This angle is my favorite as I believe it contains an enormous amount of symbolism.  

Honor Flight Syracuse Honor Flight Maine

Gunnery Sgt. Sara Sheffield sang beautifully for us and I am always astonished at her composure and grace.  She's a recruiting poster!

IMG_3915-2Gunnery Sgt. Sara Sheffield IMG_3929-2IMG_3929-2

At the Lincoln, Blue Ridge Honor Flight put together a new ceremony which worked out perfectly but was precarious as it was a first for me. I really like my control and these big events give me heartburn.  I'd like to thank everyone involved for working with the photographers to keep the crowd at a respectful distance.  And the crowd was as you can see very respectful and greeted the veterans after the ceremony.  


Blue Ridge Honor FlightI always try to get one picture which will work as a two page spread.

Touring with an escort around DC reminds me what a beautiful city Washington, DC is.  Our bus "guide" (Guild of Professional Tour Guides) reminded us that the use of police escorts was an honor bestowed on us by a grateful nation.  And as we glided though really bad traffic on Constitution Avenue, I was feeling pretty grateful  Honor Flights have become a familiar site in town and a few boy scouts saw us and assembled for a salute! Life is good aboard an Honor Flight!

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Back at the WWII, we were greeted by students and tourists who seem to naturally assemble along the entrance way to the Memorial. The sloping walkways seem to be a gathering place for veterans and family eager to be photographed at their state column. Frequently families fly in to DC and surprise the veteran as he or she gets off the bus. These reunions are incredibly heartwarming.  It's been reported and I have had it happen that veterans open up about their experiences during the Honor Flight.  Sometimes the vetereans just hang out and enjoy each other.  Honor Flight is a rich experience for both the veterans and the volunteers.

  IMG_4095Greeters at WWII Memorial

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The afternoon at the WWII Memorial concluded with a wreath laying at the Wall of Stars with two elderly veterans: one who was the last survivor of the Bataan Death March and the other who was at Iwo Jima.  Remarkable stuff and as always, I am moved and honored to be able to document these events. Living in Paradise!

IMG_4107 Wreath laying WWII MemorialOne the last survivor of Bataan Death March and the other a survivor of Iwo Jima. Jeff Miller and Paul Howell (center) organized and raised the money for the flight

I was amused today to witness both Earl and Jeff at the WWII Memorial having solemly "retired" at the Summit!  

And I'd like to recognize some of the "USUAL SUSPECTS" here.  A great group of people who leave life behind and create magic for our elderly veterans. Thanks!

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(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) Sun, 29 Apr 2018 02:32:35 GMT
Central Missouri Honor Flight April 26, 2018 With the new copies of the new HONOR FLIGHT photo book in hand, I headed down to visit with Central Missouri Honor Flight who is featured in a couple of pages on Arlington Cemetery. It was nice to finally have a finished product.  Editing over 70,000 images proved a more difficult task than I had imagined. I am using these blogs to isolate picture for future projects.


Steve Paulsell, President of Central Missouri Honor Flight reviews the new book

I first went to the Vietnam Memorial to meet by author buddy Michele Sprye who as usual had left from the airport and gone directly to the Vietnam Memorial where she and Park Service Volunteers Bob Fano and Dan Arant were working with her to make "rubbings" from the Wall.

Michele Sprye at Korea Memorial with volunteers Bob Fano and Dan Arant. 20180426-IMG_383220180426-IMG_3832Michele Sprye at Korea Memorial


20180426-IMG_3868Sharon Paulsell and her son with Gunnery Sgt at the WWII Memorial




They are bound in a special envelope with information on the deceased and the Wall itself which is given to families at homecoming...and they do have a homecoming.  I-70 is closed for twenty five miles as are all of the adjacent roads for the three to five hundred motorcyclists who greet the flights and travel from the airport to him base with the buses. 

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Sharon Paulsell's son Sam was volunteering to accompany a veteran and so the Missouri hub is a family affair with the President being Mary Paulsell, sister of Steve Paulsell (Trip Leader) who is the husband of Sharon Paulsell (Trip Coordinator).  A tight ship.  It's interesting to see how the hubs differ--in personnel, fund raising strategies, training and homecoming. 
Angela Barnes Bennett, ace photographer and ambassador of good will. 20180426-IMG_3868Sharon Paulsell and her son with Gunnery Sgt at the WWII Memorial 20180426-IMG_3868Two Missourians greeting the flight. 20180426-IMG_3868Wheelchair ramps

20180426-IMG_3868Sharon Paulsell and her son with Gunnery Sgt at the WWII Memorial 20180426-IMG_3868Congressman who came out to greet. 20180426-IMG_3868Sharon Paulsell and her son with Gunnery Sgt at the WWII Memorial 20180426-IMG_3868Sharon Paulsell and her son with Gunnery Sgt at the WWII Memorial 20180426-IMG_3868Sharon Paulsell and her son with Gunnery Sgt at the WWII Memorial 20180426-IMG_3868Sharon Paulsell and her son with Gunnery Sgt at the WWII Memorial

(STEPHEN R. BROWN PHOTOGRAPHY) books central dc dc photo book flight honor memorial missouri photography travel veterans washington wwii Sat, 28 Apr 2018 02:10:59 GMT

_DSC7209US Park PoliceSteve Jones digs a hole in traffic as he corners at 17th and Independence Ave NW while leading Honor Flight Layfayette Indiana to the WWII Memorial

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Today there were three hubs in town. All were escorted by the National Park Police. As my cab neared the WWII Memorial, we were stopped by Honor Flight Layfayette Indiana lead by US Park Police Officer Steve Jones--motorman extraordinaire.  The bus drivers and escorts play a delicate and almost acrobatic lunge through town.  Cool to watch and photograph from the front in the bus.  

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US Park Police Motorcycle Officer Larry Holmes is as dazzling a driver but on a quieter motorcycle and cuts a cool profile. He is a regular escort with Honor Flight and this day was escorting Honor Flight Eastern Iowa.  I own a couple of motorcycles and have been riding for fifty years.  Watching these guys handle their bikes is really impressive.  Stay safe!

GOLD STAR MOMS, Layfayette, Indiana

Pam Mow and Dana Hawk have been leading the Gold Star Indiana Honor Flight for ten years. They are doing six flights this year and have made an enormous impact.  The Honor Flight impact extends throughout the family and local area as the experience revitalizes these elderly men and women.  What's not to like?    

_DSC7217Alan RossAlan Ross, Member of the DC Guild of Professional Guides  

Dana Vann and Pam Mow with Mr. Mow who I didn't have a chance to meet.