They manned anti-aircraft guns at Pearl Harbor, slogged ashore under devastating fire at Normandy and fought their way inch-by-inch up Mount Suribachi on Iwo Jima, then modestly returned home to resume their civilian lives as farmers and teachers.
Today, veterans fortunate enough to have survived World War II’s carnage are in their 80s or 90s. Many will never get a chance to see the memorial their grateful nation erected in 2004 to honor them, unless folks like us help.
Blue Grass Energy and Kentucky’s Touchstone Energy Cooperatives have joined with the Bluegrass Chapter of the Honor Flight Network to sponsor an Honor Flight for these veterans on Saturday, Oct. 22.
Blue Grass Energy and Kentucky’s Touchstone Energy Cooperatives are paying to fly 35 World War II vets, including one from each of the East Kentucky Power Cooperative system’s 16 member cooperatives, from Louisville to Washington, D.C., to visit the World War II Memorial.
Volunteers representing Blue Grass Energy and the other co-ops will accompany the vets as guardians, to ease their travel and assist them in any way possible.
“These brave men and women risked their lives and endured untold suffering on our behalf, so we could enjoy the freedoms we often take for granted,” says Cathryn W. Gibson, Blue Grass Energy vice president of Member Services and Economic Development. “We felt like this trip is the least we could do as a way of saying thank you.”
The World War II Memorial pays tribute to the 16 million who served in the United States Armed Forces during the war, the 400,000-plus who died and all who supported the war effort on the home front. The memorial is flanked by the Washington Monument to the east and the Lincoln Memorial to the west.
While in Washington, the veterans also will visit other U.S. war memorials and be greeted by various government officials. They will be transported around the city on chartered buses.