Honor Flight Long Island will hold a reunion Dec. 8 at the American Airpower Museum, to celebrate our WWII and Korean War Heroes who came to Washington DC on Sept. 22, on a free, early-morning flight to visit their respective military service memorials. They also visited the Tomb of The Unknown Soldier, and met officers from their military branches. They landed that evening at Islip MacArthur Airport to a raucous “bag pipe” welcome, and thunderous applause from hundreds of family and friends.
Honor Flight Long Island (HFLI) is our local, nonprofit chapter of the national Honor Flight Network. HFLI organizes, hosts and pays for the biannual flights, which depart from Islip MacArthur Airport. As part of the day’s events, veterans and their guardians (volunteers who make the trips possible) fly to Baltimore-Washington International Airport, where a motor coach takes them to DC and the WWII, Korean and Vietnam memorials, to Arlington National Cemetery, Air Force, Navy and other memorials.
“Your country said that it needed you, and you said yes, I will go,” HFLI president Bill Jones told the 50 veterans who made the DC trip.
Jones said his group flies our local heroes to visit and reflect together at our national memorials.
“Long Islanders with loved ones interested in taking an Honor Flight, should contact us and we’ll make all the required arrangements,” he said, adding that they’re now lining up 2019 trips for eligible veterans on the wait list. Bill Jones lives with his wife and daughter in Southampton, NY.
Each trip includes 50 veterans who go for free, thanks to donations from across Long Island. They are accompanied by 50 guardians, next generation, able-bodied volunteers who donate $400 (tax deductible) to offset the day’s travel expenditures. If there is no family member to act as a guardian, don’t worry, HFLI has a roster of volunteers ready to step up for the privilege and donate the fee.
Join Honor Flight as it presents veterans with their Tribute Photo Journals on Saturday, Dec. 8, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the American Airpower Museum, 1230 New Highway, Farmingdale.
For more information, to apply for spots on upcoming 2019 flights, or make a contribution to become a veteran’s guardian, visit www.honorflightlongisland.org, or call Virginia Bennett at 631-702-2423 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.