93-Year-Old World War II Veteran Earl Kunnemann Visited National War Memorial for the First Time
COLLINSVILLE, IL., Oct. 2, 2014 . . . Seventy-three years after enlisting in the United States Navy, Earl Kunnemann, a 93-year-old World War II veteran living at Cedarhurst of Collinsville Assisted Living and Memory Care, got his chance to visit the National World War II Memorial in Washington D.C. that was built in honor of the 16 million who served in the U.S. armed forces. On September 30, 2014, Kunnemann, along with 22 other World War II veterans from the St. Louis Metropolitan area, took an honor flight from Lambert-St. Louis International Airport to Washington D.C. for this once-in-a-lifetime experience. Kunnemann was selected for the flight by the Greater St. Louis Honor Flight organization after receiving an application from Cedarhurst of Collinsville executive director, Kari Lenz.
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“Earl watched a movie in our dining room about the honor flight program and expressed his interest in applying for it,” said Lenz. “I asked him if he had been to the war memorial before and he told me he had not, but thought it would be wonderful and amazing. I knew Provision Living, the operator of Cedarhurst of Collinsville, would sponsor and pay for a staff member to go as a guardian if we had a veteran who had never been, so I filled out the application the next day and we were accepted. I was honored to go as his guardian since he doesn’t have any family members living here locally.”
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