Freedom Honor Flight held its 20th mission on September 17. Submitted photo
Freedom Honor Flight held its 20th mission on September 17. Submitted photo

Submitted by Liz Gunderson, Pierce Pepin Cooperative Services

ELLSWORTH, WI – Freedom Honor Flight held its 20th mission on September 17. The flight carried veterans along with volunteer guardians and a medical crew to Washington, D.C., giving the veterans the opportunity to visit the memorials that stand in their honor.  

Pierce Pepin Cooperative Services donated $1,000 to this flight in honor of their service. Their names are kept confidential by the Freedom Honor Flight organization for privacy reasons.

“We are very proud that Pierce Pepin can honor our local veterans in this way,” said Larry Dokkestul, president and CEO. “This is a small token of the gratitude we feel toward our veterans and the sacrifices they have made to serve our country.”

Veterans are chosen for the trip on a first-come, first-served basis with priority given to WWII veterans and veterans with a terminal illness, Korean War and Vietnam War veterans. They also accept applications from service personnel from any era, whether or not it was in wartime.  The one-day trip to Washington, D.C., took the veterans and volunteers to the WWII Memorial, Korean War Memorial, Vietnam Memorial, Air Force Memorial, Marine Corps Memorial, Arlington National Cemetery and the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier to watch the changing of the guard.

Freedom Honor Flight, an affiliate of the national Honor Flight Network, is a La Crosse-based organization founded in April of 2008 and is one of 127 “hubs” established around the country. Freedom Honor Flight serves 16 counties in Wisconsin, including Pierce, Pepin, St. Croix and Buffalo, seven counties in Minnesota and two in Iowa.

For more information about Freedom Honor Flight and how you can support their effort, visit freedomhonorflight.org.