Q. Can my wife, husband, mother, father or sibling go with me?
A. No. At the present time we have over thousands of World War ll Veterans on our national waiting list and more who will apply this year and in future years.
It is doubtful that we will get to every deserving Veteran in time.
Over 1000-1500 Veterans pass away each day patiently awaiting their turn and hundreds more will not live long enough to visit their precious memorial.
Imagine how long the waiting list will be if we added Non-Veterans to the waiting list.
Additionally, we are concerned with the safety and security of our Veterans and it cannot be expected that an 65-90 year old spouse, mother, father or sibling will be able to handle a Veteran of the same age in a wheelchair or in an emergency; therefore, we rely on younger trained Guardians for the safe being of our Veterans.
The only family members who are permitted to go are those who are Veterans themselves.
Q. I am a widow of a World War ll Veteran. Can I go?
A. Sadly, the answer is no.
Again, we simply do not have the resources, funding or seating available to transport all the Veterans who are presently on our waiting list.
Adding spouse’s widows and widowers simply is not an option for our program.
Q. If I did not serve in the US Armed Forces, can I go?
A. Sadly, the answer is no.
Q. How much does it cost? How much money do I have to bring with me?
A. The cost to all Veterans is free. You do not need to bring any money for your trip expenses unless you intend to purchase souvenirs.
Q. Can my son, daughter, grandson or granddaughter go as a Guardian?
A. Our Top Priority is the safe travel and security of all the Veterans. While we encourage the travel of a family member with the Veteran there are factors that require decisions to be made such as:
- How many Veterans are scheduled to go?
- Of the physically challenged or disabled Veterans going, how many will have to be physically assisted getting on or off an airplane, bus or at the memorials and restaurant?
- How many Veterans are utilizing wheelchairs?
- How many Veterans are utilizing Oxygen or have other medical or physical impediments that require special handling or care.
Q. Which Guardian applicants are most qualified?
A. Medically trained, active duty military personnel and Veterans who have participated on a previous trip are given top priority and serve as leadership and experienced members.
Applicants physically capable of assisting in the lifting of Veterans who weigh 100 pounds or more are also given priority.
Once we feel we have enough of these positions filled then other non-experienced applicants are considered.
These decisions rest solely with our Veterans Selection Committee and our Operations Planner.
PLEASE NOTE THAT EACH GUARDIAN MUST UNDERGO A REQUIRED TRAINING SESSION EACH YEAR CONDUCTED BY THE HONOR FLIGHT BLUEGRASS CHAPTER BEFORE THEY ARE ALLOWED TO ASSUME THE RESPONSIBILITY AS A QUALIFIED GUARDIAN.
Q. What is the definition of an “experienced” Guardian?
A. An “experienced ” Guardian is one who has undergone the required training session conducted by the Honor Flight Bluegrass Chapter and who has participated in a previous flight.
Q. How do you decide which Veterans get to go?
A. Veterans are selected on a “first-come, first-served” basis as relegated by their War Service Date and application date.
Within the applicant base, top priority is given to World War ll Veterans that have not visited the Memorial and all Veterans from other wars that have been diagnosed with a terminal illness.
Our next priority is those that served in the Korean War and then those that served in Vietnam War.
The progression will continue with subsequent wars as the waiting list dynamic changes.
Applications are posted by War Service Date, application date and data entry date so as to ensure the “first-come, first-served” concept.
Sadly, we are unable to offer or invite those Honored Veterans that have previously visited their Memorials on a personal trip or that has been the recipient of an Honor Flight.
Q. What is the age limit for Guardians?
A. Due to liability limitations and the physical requirements of assisting Veterans the age limit for Guardians of any gender is 16-65 years of age.
Q. What if a Veteran needs a wheelchair?
A. If a Veteran requires a wheelchair for mobility during the trip we ask the Veteran to bring their own.
We have a limited number of wheelchairs that we can make available on any one trip.
If a Veteran can obtain a wheelchair from a local fraternal organization such as VFW, American Legion, AMVETS, DAV, VA Hospital so much the better.
Contact with our office will assure the needs of the Veteran are met.
About 15-20% of Veterans we have transported over the past five years were in wheelchairs and so we order deluxe motor coaches equipped to handle wheelchairs.
Q. What if a Veteran needs oxygen?
A. A Veteran must provide their own oxygen (gas or concentrator) to the departure airport.
Oxygen bottles are strictly forbidden to be carried on board the airplane by the FAA and the Airline; therefore, an Oxygen Concentrator that is powered by batteries must be utilized.
There are no facilities aboard the airplane for the utilization of a Portable Oxygen Concentrator that plugs into an electric outlet.
If the Veteran does not own their own concentrator, contact the primary supplier of the Veteran’s gaseous oxygen for the loan of a concentrator and the charging system for the batteries.
Once the Veteran reaches the destination he/she will be provided gaseous oxygen by the Honor Flight at no cost to the Veteran for the trip to the memorials, and his/her return to the airport while the oxygen concentrator batteries are recharged at the airport.
When the Veteran returns to the airport for the trip home he/she will be given back the oxygen concentrator and battery charging system and will return the gaseous oxygen bottles to airport personnel.
Upon the Veterans arrival home he/she may resort back to their normal oxygen supply.
To ensure the Veteran will have ample oxygen for his/her use the Veteran must supply the Honor Flight with a doctor’s prescription indicating the oxygen flow rate, frequency and the delivery system.
Q. Are terminally ill Veterans given any special priority?
A. Yes! Such Veterans go to the top of the selection list for the next trip in accordance with our TLC Program.
Q. Do Guardians travel at no cost as does the Veteran?
A. Guardians donate a tax free sum determined by the Honor Flight Bluegrass Board of Directors to offset the costs of their airfare, bus transport, liability insurance, police escort, tee-shirt, name tag and lanyard and meals.
Q. What is the tax free amount a Guardian must submit for their trip?
A. As of January 1, 2015 that amount has been set by the Board of Directors at $500.00.
Q. Will I receive an acknowledgement from the Honor Flight for the Guardian Donation?
A. Yes, the Honor Flight will acknowledge the donation for your tax purposes
Q. How is the Honor Flight funded?
A. The Honor Flight receives no national or government sponsorships, nor does the Honor Flight utilize the services of professional soliciters .
Our funding comes primarily from individuals, corporations and organizations that recognize the great accomplishments and sacrifices of the honored Veterans and want these heroes to see their memorials before it is too late.
Q. Does the Honor flight have any paid staff?
A. No! The Honor Flight is an all-volunteer organization.
Q. Does the Honor Flight remit any money to the National organization, The Honor Flight Network?
A. No! All donations and funds received by Honor Flight Bluegrass remains within the Bluegrass Region.
Q. How can I make a donation?
A. Donations can be made by credit card from our website honorflightbluegrass.org, or through PayPal.
Checks can be mailed to Honor Flight Bluegrass, P.O. Box 991364, Louisville, KY 40269-1364
Q. How Can I contact the Honor Flight?
A. E-Mail: email@example.com
Tel: (888) 998-1941
Mail: Honor Flight Bluegrass, P.O. Box 991364, Louisville, KY 40269-1364