Veterans from World War II and the Korean War visiting Washington, D.C. last year as part of Brookshire Grocery Co.’s annual Heroes Flight program, which has brought more than 330 veterans to D.C. to honor their service in commemoration of Memorial Day.

Last week, NACDS President & CEO Steven Anderson, IOM, CAE, asked NACDS members in CEO Issue Update to share what they do to “remember and honor those who have given the ultimate sacrifice in service to our nation” in commemoration of Memorial Day. Brookshire Grocery Co. (BGC) responded that this year marks the 12th annual Heroes Flight to Washington, D.C., for seven veterans of World War II and 24 Korean War veterans. BGC provides Heroes Flight to selected veterans at no cost to them so they can visit memorials in the nation’s capital, several of which were erected in their honor. Several BGC employees accompanied the veterans on their journey.

This year, the group visited the World War II, Korean War and Vietnam War memorials on the National Mall, and were led on a tour of the Capitol by Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX). The veterans also got to participate in the Changing of the Guard ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery and visited the U.S. Marines, Navy and Airforce memorials, in addition to other landmarks. BGC began the program in 2010 and since then more than 330 veterans from Texas, Louisiana and Arkansas have participated in the trips.

Veterans are a part of all our lives and it is imperative to remember and acknowledge the sacrifices they made to keep our country safe—and free. Veterans often serve without asking for anything in return, which makes this YouTube video of last year’s Heroes Flight so touching. One veteran modestly recounts the actions his team took that led to each of them receiving medals for bravery, and another recalls the loss of his brother in World War II, a painful reminder of the ultimate cost of war.

Members of the veterans’ communities gathered at Love Field in Dallas to send the veterans off on their journey to D.C. on May 30, and welcomed them home yesterday—smiling, applauding and expressing gratitude for all they gave to their country.