According to the US Department of Veterans Affairs, "we are losing 372 veterans per day and only 620,000 of the 16 million Americans who served in World War II were alive in 2016."  According to the National Veterans Foundation, "5.7 million Americans served during the Korean War, and today there are still approximately over 2.25 million Korean war veterans still alive. "

On Saturday, May 12, 2018, 60 World War II, Korean, and Vietnam veterans from the Twin Tiers will take a flight to Washington, DC through the Twin Tiers Honor Flight, a hub of the Honor Flight Network, a non-profit organization, which honors America’s veterans with trips to see their war memorials in Washington, DC.

While in Washington, D.C., veterans will visit the Vietnam Wall, the Korean War Memorial, the Lincoln Memorial, Arlington National Cemetery, and the WWII Memorial, among other sights.

Traci Taylor

Many of the veterans who will be taking this trip didn't receive a hero's welcome home when they returned from war and so mark your calendar for the late evening of Saturday, May 12, 2018 because you and your family are invited to gather at the Greater Binghamton Airport to clap and cheer as our veterans depart the plane following their trip. You're welcome to wear patriotic colored clothing, to bring American flags to wave, and to make homemade signs if you'd like.

Please help by spreading the word to anyone you think would like to show appreciation and gratitude to our veterans through the homecoming celebration. Everyone is asked to be at the Binghamton Airport by 7 p.m. on Saturday, May 12th. The gathering will take place in Hanger 1 (look for the American flags). The plane is expected to return between 8 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. While parking is free (you just have to tell the gate attendant when you leave that you were there for the Twin Tiers Honor Flight Homecoming Celebration), it is limited so please carpool if you can. Seating will be limited, so bring a chair if you're unable to stand for a length of time. Security search protocols will be in place. No backpacks, but feel free to wear patriotic colored clothing, make signs, and bring flags if you'd like.

Also, please look in your closet for any unwanted shoes, boots, and cleats and bring them with you for our shoe drive! Public Employee Federation members will be on hand to collect them. Learn more about the shoe drive and how it benefits our local veterans here. 

This is a video of a Twin Tiers Honor Flight Homecoming at the Greater Binghamton Airport from a few years ago and it would be phenomenal if a homecoming of this magnitude could be recreated for this and each future returning Honor Flight trip.

The Twin Tiers Honor Flight doesn't charge veterans anything for their trip - everything is completely funded through donations and fundraising efforts, which are tax deductible.  The Twin Tiers Honor Flight is a federally recognized 501 (c) (3) organization, registered with the New York State Charities Bureau (New York State Registration Number: 44-32-54).