Parade of cars, trucks and a tanker honors WWII and other veterans as part of Honor Flight

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Cars, trucks and even a tanker decked in American flags drove in a procession through Fort Lauderdale Tuesday — a day ahead of Veterans Day — to honor WWII, Korean and Vietnam veterans.

The socially distanced car parade was put together by Honor Flight South Florida and Spirit Airlines as a way to honor veterans. Police and fire vehicles escorted the procession.

“We wanted to remind them that they are taken care of,” said Rick Asper, chairman of Honor Flight South Florida.

The veterans honored Tuesday were part of a group of about 300 from South Florida who were scheduled to be flown to Washington in 2020 to see the war memorials. Their flight has been postponed until 2021 because of COVID-19.

Asper said the non-profit group has been holding parades from Boca Raton to Key West since July.

The veteran is given a heads-up that someone would be dropping off a gift package, but instead they are greeted with honking horns and sirens from emergency vehicles.

Mission BBQ also brings its signature tanker to deliver meals to the veterans.

Spirit Airlines also participated in the parade.

“As a part of our core values, we remain committed to working with Honor Flight South Florida, proudly supporting the veterans that have done so much for our country,” said Laurie Villa, senior vice president and chief human resources officer at Spirit Airlines and president of the Spirit Airlines Charitable Foundation in a news release.

“Traditionally we fly out our Veterans to Washington, D.C., to visit the memorials created in honor of their service. This year, we are doing our celebrations a little differently, but our strong commitment to our veterans remains the same.”

Asper said they plan on doing parades until they recognize all of the veterans who now have to wait for their flight.

“It’s our way of thanking them for their service,” Asper said.