Honor flight set for May 2

Published 11:59 pm Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Organizers of a planned honor flight for World War II veterans are accepting applications from veterans who are interested in a trip to the World War II memorial in Washington, D.C., and looking for sponsors to make that trip possible.

Andalusia Chamber of Commerce executive vice president, Ashley Eiland, provided details of the Sat., May 2, trip to the city council Tuesday night.

A county-wide group, Covington Region Honor Flight, is planning the trip, which is free to veterans. The trip is designed to give veterans of World War II an opportunity to visit the World War II Memorial in Washington. The Memorial was dedicated on May 29, 2004, and many veterans haven’t had the opportunity to visit it.

Honor flights are designed so that veterans are escorted by volunteer guardians on the flight to Washington, and throughout the trip. The flights are met by a tour bus service that takes the veterans to the nation’s war memorials. Special assistance in the form of scooters, wheelchairs, and oxygen is provided.

Andalusia director of leisure services, Dwight Mikel, who also serves on the committee, said each veteran also will receive T-shirts, caps and disposable cameras.

“Those folks saved the world for the rest of us,” Mayor Earl Johnson said, “We certainly need to support this effort.

The trip is $500 per person. While the honor flight organizers will raise funds to cover veterans’ expenses, volunteer guardians will pay for their trips.

Applications for veterans are available at the Andalusia Area Chamber of Commerce, Opp Chamber of Commerce and Florala’s Tri-Cities Chamber of Commerce.

The applications are designed to help coordinators determine special needs of participating veterans that might need to be accommodated.

Donations should be made payable to Honor Flight/AACF and can be mailed to the Covington Region Honor Flight, Covington County Commission, P.O. Box 188, Andalusia, AL 36420.