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Veterans should never be turned away

Jeff Miller of Henderson, N.C., and Earl Morse of Springfield, Ohio, a retired Air Force captain, ruminated about the heartbreak of so many veterans not having the means to visit the nation's war memorials that honor them.

Miller and Morse decided to act. They set up the

Honor Flight Network, which would take these heroes to the nation's capital to see the statuary that honors them.

The first Honor Flight shuttled 300 Asheville area veterans to the capital on Sept. 23 and 24, 2006.

Volunteers and donors picked up the entire tab, including hotel accommodations.

By the end of 2010, the group had sent 63,292 veterans of World War II, the Korean War, and the Vietnam War to Washington. The numbers have grown since.

What a great nation to have such veterans and so many people willing to help them. Only the heartless would not be willing to help these bands of brothers visit The Wall and the other memorials.

Heartless pretty much describes the Obama administration's decision to barricade the World War II Memorial on the National Mall on Tuesday.

This belligerent and foolish act of political theater only gets worse.

In Toledo, Honor Flight of Northwest Ohio President Lee Armstrong said officials threatened to arrest his group when it goes to Washington next week.

They will go anyway. Armstrong applauded the refusal by veterans to leave the Mall on Tuesday.

"The Germans and the Japanese couldn't contain us," Armstrong told WNWO. "They weren't going to let barriers contain them today. They wanted to see their memorial."

President Obama's administrators blamed their action on the federal government shutdown.

Clearly, the White House is confused.

The people own the Mall — not the government, which is merely hired to keep the grass mowed and the water filtered.

The White House wants the shutdown to hurt the most, which is why it barricaded the memorial.



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