As 2020 comes to an end our great nation is facing a grave crisis never before experienced in modern times. With more than 300,000 deaths due to COVID-19 virus our infrastructure has been stretched to a breaking point. Our hospitals, doctors, nurses, and staff are being asked to do unimaginable things that once were only practiced in drills. The ICU’s are overflowing, PPE is in short supply, and worst of all our loved ones are left to die without family at their side.
The Board of Directors and volunteers of the Eastern Iowa Honor Flight would like to take a moment to recognize each and every front line worker for the sacrifices they have made, many who have paid the ultimate sacrifice. Although there are too many to mention we would also like to thank all the behind the scene workers who have served in a support role, the people we never see but could not have managed through the pandemic without their dedication and skills.
And let us not forget the families and friends of those who have passed. Let us hope 2021 will be a year we can get back to a “new normal” and we can once again spend time with family and friends.
The Eastern Iowa Honor Flight Board of Directors and volunteers.
National Honor Flight Suspension Extension Update
The National Honor Flight Board has suspend all Honor Flight related travel through April 30, 2021.. This decision was based upon many factors including, but not limited to the following:
- Current CDC guidelines and information regarding the timing considerations of the federal rollout of possible vaccines.
- Washington, D.C. is currently requiring all visitors to D.C. to have (and be able to present proof of) a negative COVID test done within 72 hours prior to arrival in D.C. (this is in addition to current group gathering restrictions that continue to be in place in D.C., Maryland and Virginia.
- The National Park Service is not currently issuing group gathering permits and there is no indication when NPS will resume permitting for group gatherings.
Honoring the service of WWII, Korean, and Vietnam War veterans of Eastern Iowa
WELCOME TO THE EASTERN IOWA HONOR FLIGHT
The mission of the Eastern Iowa Honor Flight is to provide veterans with a “once in a lifetime” opportunity to visit monuments and memorials built in their honor for the sacrifice and service they made for our freedom.
All veterans are encouraged to apply. Priority is given to WW2 Veterans, Korean War Veterans, and Veterans with catastrophic illness followed by Vietnam Veterans and Veterans from other conflicts. Even if you did not serve in combat you are still eligible to apply. Our mission is to take every veteran who applies. Due to a large waiting list please apply only once, your applications are kept on file.
Who is eligible to apply? Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force, Coast Guard, Reserves, and National Guard veterans serving during war or peace time, serving over seas or stateside.
The Eastern Iowa Honor Flight accepts applications from veterans in Benton, Iowa, Jasper, Jones, Johnson, Linn, Marshall, South Tama, Poweshiek and Washington Counties. Veterans from surrounding areas are welcome if they are able to fly from The Eastern Iowa Airport in Cedar Rapids.
Iowans who served.
When World War 2 broke out, 226,638 Iowa men and women answered the call to duty. Of those who served 8,398 died in the line of duty. But World War 2 would not be the last time Iowans would face danger in a foreign country. From June of 1950 to the end of combat on July 27, 1953, 85,341 Iowans served in the Korean Conflict. Of those, 508 were killed. Then came Vietnam. From the first landing of Marines at Danang in March of 1965 until Saigon fell in April of 1975, 115,000 Iowans were either drafted or enlisted in all branches of service. Eight hundred sixty-seven Iowans never came home. Two other calls to duty were the Persian Gulf (August 2, 1990-February 28, 1991) and Panama/Granada invasion (October 25, 1983-December 15, 1983). Between the two, 3,935 Iowans served. Of those 7 died in the Persian Gulf and 2 in Panama/Granada.