Mid-Michigan residents invited to ‘show veterans some love’ during Honor Flight departure
Monday, June 6, 2016
Posted by: Eric Dimoff
More than 60 WWII, Korean War and Vietnam War vets from Michigan will depart June 8 from Lansing for daylong ‘Tour of Honor’ in Washington, D.C.
Organizers of a Wednesday, June 8, Honor Flight between Lansing and Washington, D.C., are asking Greater Lansing residents to give 62 U.S. military veterans from throughout the state – including three from the Lansing area – a rousing send-off and welcome home at Capital Region International Airport.
“We’d really like to rock the house at the Lansing airport and show veterans some love,” said Tricia Donegan, director of the Mid-Michigan Honor Flight Hub. “People can wave flags, signs and banners as they see the veterans off in the morning and welcome them home at night. Hugs and kisses are welcome, too.”
Those planning to participate are asked to arrive at the airport by 8 a.m. to greet the veterans as they arrive by bus at 8:30 a.m. for their chartered American Airlines flight to Washington, D.C.
After departing at 9:30 a.m., the World War II, Korean War and Vietnam War veterans will experience a daylong “Tour of Honor” in Washington, D.C., that will consist of stops at the National World War II Memorial, the Korean War Veterans Memorial, the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, the Marine Corps War Memorial and Arlington National Cemetery.
The return flight is scheduled to touch down in Lansing at 9:15 p.m.
Capital Region International Airport will provide send-off gifts to the veterans and hand out flags for onlookers to wave.
“We hope the community will provide a warm Lansing welcome to these brave men and women both in the morning when they depart and when they return at the end of the day,” said Bob Selig, president and CEO of the Capital Region Airport Authority.
Next week’s flight is the first mission Mid-Michigan Honor Flight has staged at Capital Region International Airport.
“We thought a trip from our state’s capital to our nation’s capital was a natural,” Donegan said.
Flight participants will stay at Michigan State University the night before and the night of their trip.
Nationwide in 2015, the nonprofit National Honor Flight Network flew nearly 21,000 veterans to Washington, D.C. The flights mainly honor WWII veterans but they are also open to other veterans with special circumstances, such as terminal illness.
An entire Tour of Honor costs from $97,000 to $110,000, all funded by grants and donations from Michigan residents and businesses, Donegan said.
More information is available at midmichiganhonorflight.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.