Honor Flight helps N.M. vets see DC war memorials

........................................................................................................................................................................................

LAS CRUCES, N.M. – America’s veterans are honored today for their service and sacrifice for the nation, but there is a program in New Mexico that works year-round to do that. Honor Flight of Southern New Mexico flies about 50 vets at a time to tour the war memorials and other historic sites in Washington, D.C.

Honor Flight chairman David Melcher said the World War II veterans certainly earned the memorial built in their honor.
“Had they not done their duty in Europe, as well as in Asia, you know, the jets flying over El Paso and over Las Cruces might have different insignias on ‘em,” he said.

The flights cost about $1,000 per veteran, he said. Honor Flight of Southern New Mexico is part of the national “Honor Flight Network.”

Time is of the essence to help aging World War II veterans tour the sites that mean so much to them, he warned.
“We want to get all our veterans – our World War II veterans, as many as we can – get them back to see their memorial. We’re losing anywhere from 600 to 1,000 a day, nationally,” he explained.

The Honor Flight Network, which is open to all veterans, has helped nearly 100,000 veterans across the country see such sites as the Korean, Vietnam and Iwo Jima memorials, as well as Arlington National Cemetery.

More information is available at www.honorflightnm.com.

Honor Flight of Southern New Mexico works to make sure that New Mexico's veterans are able to visit the World War II Memorial and other important patriotic sites in the nation's capital. Photo courtesy Honor Flight of Southern New Mexico.