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WATCH: Son honors 98-year-old York veteran with personal flyover

Tina Locurto
York Dispatch

A York County native honored his 98-year-old father and World War II veteran Wednesday morning with his own personal flyover above his house in the quiet neighborhood of Regents Glen.

David Kahley, joined by three other pilots, made the trip from Culpeper, Virginia, to York County to honor Arlington "Art" Kahley. The veteran had planned to attend the Arsenal of Democracy event in Washington, D.C., on Friday, in which 66 airplanes would be flying over the World War II memorial. 

Due to COVID-19 however, Art Kahley was advised to stay home.

"You're not going to put all these older guys together in the COVID environment, so everyone stayed home," David Kahley said. "I figure, the weather looks good, so let's go give him his own personal flyover."

Four North American T-6 Texan planes flew close, blazing trails of white smoke to a small crowd below, while Art Kahley waved his cane in the air.

Art Kahley, who was born and raised in York, was drafted into World War II in 1941 as an anti-aircraft gunner. He served overseas for three years and was stationed at several Pacific islands, including Fiji, New Guinea and the Philippines.

A flight of four WWII era airplanes make a tribute flight for Art Kahley, a WWII veteran who turned 98 last week. The planes, including one flown by Kahley's son David, were heading to Washington DC for an event.
Wednesday, September 23, 2020.
John A. Pavoncello photo

After serving, Art Kahley worked as the band director at York Suburban. His son, David, was also born and raised in York and attended York Suburban.

"It's wonderful," Art Kahley said, of his son's private flyover. "I appreciated it so much, to line up four planes to come right over the house was something else."

With a shared passion for aircraft and flying, Art Kahley took his son to his first flying lessons when he was 16.

A flight of four WWII era airplanes make a tribute flight for Art Kahley, a WWII veteran who turned 98 last week. The planes, including one flown by Kahley's son David, were heading to Washington DC for an event.
Wednesday, September 23, 2020.
John A. Pavoncello photo

"He used to drive me to the airport to take flying lessons, because I didn't have a driver's license," David Kahley said. "He was my first passenger in an airplane. So (the flyover) just seemed fitting."

— Reach Tina Locurto at tlocurto@yorkdispatch.com or on Twitter at @tina_locurto.