It’s been the “trip of a lifetime” for many of the state’s World War II and Korean War veterans who have taken a trip to Washington, D.C., to visit and reflect at their memorial, courtesy of Honor Flight of Northern New Mexico. This year our story continues with the addition of a some of our local Vietnam War veterans.
HFNNM was established as a hub of the Honor Flight Network in 2013 with the goal of honoring as many New Mexico veterans as possible for all their sacrifices. Currently, top priority is given to World War II and Korean War veterans and other veterans of conflicts who may be terminally ill.
The trip to our nation’s capital is free of charge to the veteran and includes airfare, lodging, meals and all transportation within the Washington, D.C., area. During the trip, veterans are able to visit the World War II, Korean War, Vietnam War, Lincoln, and the Women’s Memorial, as well as the Changing of the Guard at Arlington National Cemetery. Time permitting, stops are also made at the Iwo Jima and the Air Force Memorial. Honor Flight of Northern New Mexico is a 501c-3 non-profit organization that raises funds for the trip through private donations and an annual golf tournament held in September.
During the trip, each veteran is paired with a guardian who makes sure all of their needs are met. Guardians can be family members, friends, or complete strangers who have volunteered their time to the effort. Guardians pay their own way. A portion of their $1000 donation is tax deductible and covers all costs associated with the trip.
Unfortunately, time is not on our side when it comes to honoring our World War II veterans. According to the Department of Veterans Affairs, more than 300 WWII veterans die each day. If you’d like to donate to HFNNM, serve as a guardian, or take part in the annual golf tournament either as a player or as a sponsor, please send an email to [email protected] or call 505-835-1993.
For more information on Honor Flight of Northern New Mexico, visit us at www.honorflightnorthernnm.org.