DUBUQUE, Iowa — A group of 90 Dubuque are veterans are home tonight after a quick trip to Washington D.C. on Monday for an honor flight. A second flight will take off Tuesday morning from the Dubuque Airport. The trips to visit the memorials to veterans aren’t cheap, but a Dubuque police officer helped trim the cost.
Officer Brendan Welsh recently raised almost $70,000 to help with the expense of an Honor Flight. The money he raised was enough to cover the cost for nearly an entire flight.
On May 3rd, Welsh wowed ‘Dancing with the Stars Dubuque Style’ judges with what he could do with his feet. But it’s what he did behind the scenes that organizers say is more impressive.
Honor Flight of Greater Dubuque Committee Member Cheryl Sheldon said, “He’s a wonderful, wonderful young man. “
Earlier this month, Dubuque Dancing With the Stars judges awarded Welsh with a mirror ball trophy. Not only for his dance moves. But also for raising $69,519 All for the Honor Flight.
Cheryl Sheldon said, “He just kept going. I mean he doing more fundraising than we ever had anyone else do before and he just really took it to heart. “
Welsh spent Monday in Washington D.C. helping veterans visit the World War II Memorial. He says those moments where worth all that fundraising work.
Welsh said, “The emotions that are going through your body when two planes of Korean and World War 2 Veterans have strangers coming up to them and shaking their hands. “
As an Iraq War Veteran himself, Welsh says he feels a fellowship with everyone on board.
On Monday, several Veterans said they’re grateful for Welsh’s hard work.
“I really don’t know what to say,” said World War 2 Veteran James Schmitt. “That’s really nice of Welsh to do that. “