Honor Flight of the Quad Cities is announcing the 55th Honor Flight to Washington D.C. so over 90 veterans who served during the nation’s conflicts can visit the monuments throughout the capitol. The next flight will be on Tuesday, November 8. Most of the veterans on this flight served during the Vietnam conflict and some are visiting “the Wall” for the first time.
The veterans will be accompanied by 60 volunteer “guardians” who will assist them throughout the day. This Flight is designated as the “Whiteside County (IL) Honor Flight” because most of the veterans on the flight are coming from Whiteside and neighboring counties in Illinois. Several of the veterans were eligible to fly on an earlier flight but gave up their seats so that they could fly with friends and neighbors on this flight. The flight will carry a funeral flag and honor a veteran who died before seeing his memorial.
The Flight Commander will be Stephen Garrington, the Honor Flight Director and a retired Army Lt. Colonel. Garrington took over the position following the illness of Bob Morrison. He has been involved with all 55 Honor Flights, many in a support position. He will be assisted by Deputy Commander Gayle Morrell. Morrell and Garrington served together in the 5041st USAR School before they both retired. There will also be three veteran bus captains from Whiteside County.
Health and safety will be of prime importance. Masks will be worn by all participants whenever they are required by local regulations.
The veterans are expected return to the Quad City International Airport at around 10 p.m. The public is encouraged to come to the airport and give them a warm reception and welcome home. Parking at the airport will be free.
Anyone who was on active duty during WWII, Korea or Vietnam can fill out an application for an Honor Flight. Those interested in going on a flight as a guardian to assist veterans, some of whom may be in a wheelchair, can fill out an application as well. Applications are available by clicking here or emailing HonorFlight@ridgecrestvillage.org.