“It was really wonderful,” Fort Dodge-area veteran gets a special flight

FORT DODGE, I.A., – A WWII veteran took to the skies over Fort Dodge Thursday in the flight of a lifetime. It was organized through Dream Flights, an organization giving veterans free flights in a fleet of WWII-era biplanes.

It was all waves and smiles at the Fort Dodge Regional Airport as 95-year-old Donald Patz was helped into the Boeing-Stearman biplane, a plane that is 18 years younger than he is.

Dream Flights operates a small fleet of the Boeing-Stearman planes. These planes were used as training aircraft for pilots in WWII.

“It was wonderful. That was really wonderful,” said Patz. “I was never in nothing like that, other than a Piper Cub and that was in the 40s.”

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