Freedom Honor Flight announces new president, Fourth of July fundraiser and fall flight details
Now in its 10th year, La Crosse-based Freedom Honor Flight continues its mission to fly veterans to Washington D.C. in order to see the memorials and monuments erected in their honor. To date, more than 2,000 area veterans have made the flight.
Because the flights are supported entirely through donations, fundraising is an important part of the effort. Between now and July 8, Freedom Honor Flight sponsor Festival Foods is selling icons for $1 and $5, with all proceeds from the sale supporting the flights. In addition, volunteers will be staffing Festival Foods Brat Barns in Holmen, La Crosse, Onalaska and Tomah on Saturday, June 30, to raise funds.
The next flight is scheduled for September 15, and veterans who have been selected for the flight will be notified the week of July 9. Anyone who has served in the U.S. military at any time can apply for a flight. Priority is given to World War II veterans, Korean-era veterans and Vietnam-era veterans. There are currently three WWII, 24 Korean era and 505 Vietnam era veterans on the waiting list.
The organization’s new president, Dave Larsen, commented “It’s very gratifying to see the success of Freedom Honor Flight in giving veterans this honor, and especially so considering it wouldn’t be possible without the support of our partners and the individuals who donate to the cause.”
2018 Festival Foods ICON sale set for June 24
Once again, Freedom Honor Flight is partnering with Festival Foods for the organization’s third annual ICON sale. With $1 and $5 donations, customers can help honor veterans with a day they’ll never forget! Proudly display your support for our veterans with the purchase of an ICON. Sale runs June 24 – July 8 at participating locations.
La Crosse / Copeland 30 Copeland Ave
La Crosse / Village 2500 State Rd
Onalaska 1260 Crossing Meadows
Holmen 600 Holmen Dr
Tomah 701 E Clifton St
Last year, the sale raised $19,200. Thank you Festival Foods for the continued commitment to supporting our nation’s heroes!
Winona Elks Car Show set for May 20
Winona Elks Lodge #327 is set to host the annual Car, Truck, Motorcycle or Anything Show to benefit Freedom Honor Flight. Come see a variety of vehicles Sunday, May 20 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Pork chop dinner will be served from 11 a.m. until gone.
Elks 4540 Service Drive, Goodview, Minnesota
For car show information, call Arnie Jackson at 507-454-3769.
We hope to see you there!
Freedom Honor Flight announces 2018 schedule
Freedom Honor Flight, the La Crosse hub of the national Honor Flight program for veterans, announced today its 2018 flight schedule. The spring flight is scheduled for May 12, 2018. The fall flight is set for September 15, 2018. The organization has taken more than 2,000 veterans on a flight to date. The 2018 flights will be the 21st and 22nd held.
Veterans for the spring flight will be notified by phone Wednesday evening as part of the organization’s Veterans Calling Night. “It is such a fun experience, calling veterans and letting them know it’s their turn to fly,” said board member Tess Larsen. “Most of them have been on the waiting list for some time, so they’re really excited and ready to go.”
There are currently 3 World War II veterans, 82 Korean War era veterans, 466 Vietnam veterans and 65 others on the waiting list. Veterans for the flights are selected in order of application, though World War II and Korea veterans have priority status. The group encourages World War II and Korean War veterans to apply for future flights. Officials also remind the public that all veterans in the Freedom Honor Flight service area are eligible to apply for an honor flight. Physicians and paramedics accompanying each flight help with oxygen, medication and personal needs, enabling those with chronic health problems or disabilities to attend. Volunteer guardians assigned to each veteran provide additional assistance.
Due to the increasing cost of flights, with aircraft operating fees alone reaching $90,000, the non-profit continues to rely on support from the region’s businesses and individuals. This July 4, Festival Foods will again partner with Freedom Honor Flight for an ICON sale, accepting donations of $1 and $5. Participating Festivals in Holmen, La Crosse Copeland Avenue, La Crosse Village, Onalaska and Tomah locations will participate in the event, June 24–July 8. Last year, Festival customers donated nearly $20,000 through the promotion.
Freedom Honor Flight veteran applications are available online at www.freedomhonorflight.org. Veterans can apply directly online or print and mail their application to Freedom Honor Flight, PO Box 505, La Crosse WI 54602-0505.
Franke Foundation Care & Share set for Saturday, December 2
The annual Franke Foundation Care & Share event is set for Saturday, December 2 at the La Crosse Public Library, 800 Main Street. Freedom Honor Flight is one of many participating organizations. Come from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. to learn about our mission and volunteer opportunities. Donations are accepted and will be match by the Franke Foundation.