SPRINGFIELD - Land of Lincoln Honor Flight (LLHF) Mission #68 takes off on Tuesday, August 22, 2023 with 2 Korean-era veterans and 91 Vietnam era veterans. These veterans will report to Springfield Abraham Lincoln Capitol Airport from 54 Illinois towns of Assumption, Beardstown, Belleville, Bloomington, Bunker Hill, Canton, Cantrall, Carlyle, Champaign, Chatham, Decatur, Divernon, Franklin, Freeburg, Gifford, Godfrey, Grafton, Greenup, Harvel, Havana, Hillsboro, Hoopeston, Jerseyville, Kansas, Kenney, Lincoln, Lovington, Marine, Mascoutah, Morrisonville, Mt. Zion, Neoga, Niantic, Nilwood, Normal, Oakley, Petersburg Pleasant Plains, Pontiac, Rantoul, Raymond, Rochester, Rushville, Sherman, Shipman, Sigel, Sparta, Springfield, Stonington, Taylorville, Urbana, Varna, Waterloo as well as Springfield, MO and Florissant, MO.
These 93 veterans and their 86 Guardians arrive at the airport Tuesday morning at 4:00 AM to travel to Washington DC on a chartered Sun Country 737 aircraft to visit the World War II, Korean and Vietnam War memorials, as well as Arlington National Cemetery Tomb of the Unknowns, the Lincoln Memorial, the National Air & Space Museum in Chantilly, Virginia, the US Marine Corps Memorial, and the US Air Force Memorial. This day of honor is provided at absolutely no cost to our veterans.
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Joan Bortolon, LLHF President, states: “Our mission is to show our most senior veteran our gratitude for their service by hosting this day of thanks absolutely free to the veteran. They have paid enough; it is our turn to pay them back.”
These heroes return to Springfield airport at 9:30 PM on Tuesday. The general public, friends, family, and LLHF alumni veterans are encouraged to pack the airport to welcome home these heroes. Bortolon states: “Please come to the airport to give our veterans the welcome home they earned, deserved and never received.” Greeters are encouraged to arrive early and show appreciation for and support of these veterans who sacrificed so much for our country. Parking is free and volunteers will be in the parking area to assist guests to open spaces as well as the shuttle bus that will take them directly to the airport terminal door.
“We encourage any World War II, Korean Era or Vietnam Era veteran to apply now. The waiting list for future flights has never been shorter. This is your time to be honored.” Bortolon states. Any seriously impaired or terminally ill veteran will be given flight priority. Veteran and Guardian Applications may be obtained at www.LandofLincolnHonorFlight.org by clicking on Applications tab.
Land of Lincoln Honor Flight is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization that receives no government funding. It is only able to honor veterans due to the generous donations, sponsorships, fundraising events, merchandise sales and supporting efforts of the many local businesses, individuals and organizations within our service area. Land of Lincoln Honor Flight is operated by all volunteers; it has no paid staff, no office and no utilities costs. Its overall administrative cost is approximately 1% so virtually every dollar raised supports flight costs for veterans.
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