04/26/11 — Donations sought for WWII veterans trip to D.C.

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Donations sought for WWII veterans trip to D.C.

By From staff reports
Published in News on April 26, 2011 1:46 PM

A local group working to provide a trip to Washington, D.C., for older veterans to visit the World War II monument is looking for donations to help with expenses.

The Wayne County Hub of Triangle Flight of Honor is hoping to give as many veterans a chance to fly to the nation's capital as possible.

Most of the veterans are in their 80s and 90s, said Allen D. Pederson, who is helping organize the trip.

At present, 25 area veterans are signed up for a May 4 flight.

But the estimated cost is $20,000 and supporters of the Flight of Honor are asking the public to chip in and help pay for the trip.

According to Pederson, of the 16 million veterans who served in World War II, fewer than three million remain.

More than two dozen World War II veterans in Wayne County have died in the past year alone, Pederson noted.

The donated money will be used strictly for the veterans' expenses, Pederson said. Guardians who will accompany them will pay their own way. There will be a guardian for every three veterans.

The group is planning to visit the World War II monument erected in 2006, along with other monuments, including the Korean War and Vietnam War monuments, the Iwo Jima monument and the Air Force Memorial. If time allows, they also plan to visit Arlington National Cemetery.

The group will fly to Washington, then take three buses equipped with wheel chairs, walkers, portable oxygen generators, two doctors and two emergency medical personnel.

They will return to the Raleigh-Durham Airport, where a welcome crowd of several thousand people is expected.

Checks should be made payable to Triangle Flight of Honor. Donations, which are tax deductible, may be sent to Allan D. Pederson, 2095 Big Daddy's Road, Pikeville, NC 27863. For more information, call Pederson at 734-5808 or 922-5111.