'Oh boy!' Las Cruces World War II veteran takes to the skies via Dream Flights

LAS CRUCES, N.M. – World War II Veteran John Bloom, 96, took to the skies Tuesday in a restored Boeing Stearman biplane as a salute to his military service.

Dream Flights is a nonprofit organization dedicated to honoring veterans through free flights. Their effort in 2021, Operation September Freedom, has the goal of honoring 1,000 or more WWII veterans who are all now at least in their 90s.

Bloom, originally from Albuquerque, served in the United States Army Air Forces. He retired to Las Cruces and now resides at the Good Samaritan Society - Las Cruces Village. It was through the senior residence that he found out about the flight program and turned out to be the only resident to respond to the inquiry.

“Oh boy,” Bloom said once the flight ended. A round of applause met him as his feet returned to the ground, and he was all smiles while talking about what he had seen.

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