SCRANTON, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) —Military history is often experienced through books or movies, but a travel agency in Scranton offers a chance to see the real thing, and show just how important Pennsylvania’s heroes were in winning the war.

Dave Nagle is passionate about military history and the Pennsylvania veterans who made big contributions to World War II, and he’s not the only one. His travel agency offers historical vacations where veterans.

Families of veterans and history buffs get to see the battlefields of Europe up close to get an idea of the sacrifices these young soldiers made.

“We serve as a voice for veterans. We tell their stories that other people may not have known about, or that people have never talked about previously. The objective is to learn about the people from our area and what they did to support our country and to keep freedom here,” stated Nagle, co-owner of Sea the World Travel.

Several Luzerne County veterans are buried at the American cemetery in Normandy.

Richard O’Malley landed on Utah beach under heavy enemy fire. There’s now a memorial to him where he died a few weeks later, and to Harold Lonzer of Hazleton who was part of the infamous Normandy invasion.

Nagle tells the story of Joe Toye of Hughstown who lost his leg in France. His historical tour takes the group to locations close to where Toye’s unit, the 101st Airborne, defended at the Battle of the Bulge.

You may know the 101st Airborne as the Band of Brothers, made famous from the TV series of the same name. Nagle says he’ll never forget one visit to a field where Toye’s heroism stood strong.

“All of a sudden a blizzard came up, the entire ground is white with snow. We walked out into a field, it was blinding. We took pictures when we got back to the hotel. Oh my God, this is exactly how it looked 78 years ago when Joe was here,” described Nagle.

Previous tours witnessed sunsets on Omaha Beach, blood stains on a French church, and the ultimate brutality of war, the crematorium at the Dachau Concentration Camp.

The next scheduled Historical Heroes trip to Europe is set for April 2024.

For more information, visit Sea the World Travel’s website.