Most typical flights begin with a welcome party at the Shilo Inn (on Airport Way) in Portland on Wednesday night prior to leaving on Thursday morning.
We leave VERY early on Thursday morning, and typically arrive in Washington D.C. at about 3-4pm. Upon arrival, we load on a chartered bus which will take us to our hotel in Washington D.C.
Our first full day in Washington usually begins with a breakfast hosted by Congressman Greg Walden. From there we usually take a tour of the Capitol, and then we’re off to the WWII memorial!
Other excursions may include stops at the Iwo Jima Memorial, Lincoln Memorial, Viet Nam & Korean Memorials. We always make a trip to the Tomb of the Unknown at Arlington National Cemetary.
Our return trip us usually scheduled for Sunday.
Most of our breakfasts and dinners are eaten at the hotel, and we usually have a box lunch brought to meet us where we are at that time.
Honor Flight of Eastern Oregon (HFEO) is one of 117 regional “hubs” in 42 states participating in the national Honor Flight Network (HFN) program honoring WWII veterans by taking them to Washington, DC to visit their National WWII Memorial.
Almost 100,000 WWII veterans from across our nation have participated in the HFN program launched 8 years ago. WWII veterans travel free of charge in appreciation for their WWII service and sacrifice 7 decades ago preserving our freedoms. “Guardians” assisting the veterans pay hubs for their own lodging, meals, and airline expenses – about $1,000.
Ninety percent (90%) of the WWII veterans who survived WWII have passed away since the end of WWII sixty seven years ago. The surviving 1.6 million WWII veterans are older than 85 with some in their late 90s. Time is of the Essence to honor the “Greatest Generation”.
Following dedication of the 325 mile award winning WORLD WAR II VETERANS HISTORIC HIGHWAY (US Hwy 97 and SR 126), Bend Heroes Foundation continues honoring WWII veterans through HFEO, its regional Honor Flight program honoring Oregon’s WWII Veterans living east of the Cascades. HFEO is managed by the nonprofit Bend Heroes Foundation, a 501 (c) (3) non profit tax exempt organization.
On July 20, 2011 the Foundation formed a second Honor Flight hub serving the greater Portland area (Clatsop, Columbia, Washington, Multnomah, Hood River Counties) where 80 WWII veterans were then waiting to travel to Washington, DC.
Veterans and Guardians who assist the veterans will visit the WWII Memorial, U.S. Capitol, Lincoln Memorial, Iwo Jima Memorial, Tomb of the Unknowns, and other veterans memorials in the Washington, DC area. Our trips are 4 days in duration: a day traveling from Portland to Washington, 2 full days in Washington, and a day returning to Portland (PDX). On the reverse side is a photo of our group at the WWII Memorial on September 21, 2012.
During its first 24 months of operation with 6 visits to Washington, the Foundation has honored 207 WWII Veterans from both service areas. Our most recent trip was September 19-23. The next trip will be scheduled during Spring, 2013.