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Valley WWII pilot takes final flight

World War II veteran Dave Woellner's final wish was to fly a plane for the final time.

PHOENIX - We lose more than 300 World War II veterans every day, according to the US Department of Veteran's Affairs.

This week, a local hero got to live out his final dream, by celebrating with one more day in the air.

Brigadier General Dave Woellner earned his pilot wings nearly 75 years ago, as the U.S. was training young men during World War II.

Now, at the age of 96, he is in hospice care at Summit Hospice, and his final wish was to go back up in the air just one more time.

"It's gonna mean everything to General Woellner. He flew in 'em. It's been a dream to get back in the air," said Steve Ziomek, the pilot who took him up.

DreamCatchers, an Arizona nonprofit dedicated to fulfilling veterans' final dreams set up the flight, followed by a celebration of life ceremony.

The general even got to fly the plane.

"I think it'll mean everything to him," said Ziomek.

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