Honor Flight has been in the news this week, so I just wanted to take this opportunity to tell people about volunteer opportunities. I’ve been volunteering as a greeter at Reagan National Airport (DCA) for about a year now. Though we usually greet them at the airport, the photo above was a unique day when I also got to see the WWII memorial for the first time and greet the heroes there to see the memorial for them. It’s so rewarding to greet WWII, Korea, and Vietnam veterans as they exit the buses after a day of visiting military memorials. Thanks to Danielle Sturgis, our lead organizer and volunteer for flights at DCA, and Jim Braaton we have banners that read “Free Hugs for Veterans” and lots of American flags.
Despite the government shutdown and access to the memorials, Honor Flights will continue as scheduled. After a long day on the bus and going through DC traffic, it’s even more important to give these heroes a warm greeting when they arrive at the airport to take their flight home. Back in March, one vet told me as we were passing the baggage claim that it was the first time he’s ever been treated like royalty.
The full schedule of Honor Flights coming into DCA can be found here. When there are several flights in one day, there is usually a Facebook event page to coordinate a meeting place outside the terminal. Also follow @HonorFlightDCA on Twitter for the latest.
Photos courtesy of Mary Z. Fowler and Danielle Sturgis.