Thursday, August 27, 2009, 8:45 AM
By Pat Curtis
An American Legion Post in Marion is pushing to make the Eastern Iowa Airport in Cedar Rapids the next “Honor Flight” hub in Iowa. So-called “Honor Flights” have been arranged so the nation’s elderly World War Two veterans can travel to Washington, D.C. for free to see the memorial there that honors their service.
The Des Moines Airport was the hub for an “Honor Flight” earlier this month. Mary Clapp, commander of American Legion Post 298, is hoping the next “Honor Flight” leaves from Cedar Rapids. “If we can bring just a little bit of joy to them and help them have closure on their lives, I think it just brings a peace to them and comfort.”
Eighty-six-year-old Larry Moore flew planes in World War Two, but he can’t afford to pay the plane fare for the trip to D.C. “The thought of going to Washington is kind of overwhelming and here’s an opportunity to get in there on a conducted tour and to see other veterans and to see other things,” Moore says.
Casey’s General Stores announced Tuesday is would donate $250,000 so a second “Honor Flight” could depart from the Des Moines Airport.