Q: How much does it cost? How much money do I need to bring?
A: There is no cost to veterans. If you drive yourself, you will need to pay for parking. Honor Flight Columbus is not able to pay for accommodations.
Q: How are you funded?
A: Honor Flight Columbus is funded by donations from individuals, civic, fraternal and social clubs, and businesses in Central Ohio who recognize the great accomplishments and sacrifices of veterans and want them to see their memorial before it’s too late. Students from many schools have held fundraisers and are significant contributors with funds and volunteers.
Q: Can I make a donation to Honor Flight?
A: Honor Flight gratefully accepts donations from anyone EXCEPT veterans who have not traveled with us. Veterans have given enough: this is our way of saying “Thank You”! Once a veteran has traveled with Honor Flight, he or she can make a donation so that other vets can go, but it is not a requirement.
Q: How do you decide which veterans get to go?
A: Veterans are flown on a “first-come, first-served basis.” Within the applicants, top priority is currently given to World War II veterans and all other veterans with terminal illness. Our second priority is to Korean War veterans, then Vietnam veterans.
Honor Flight Columbus accepts applications from America’s Senior Veterans: Currently, these are the men and women who served during WWII, Korean War and Vietnam years. In addition, we put terminally ill veterans from any era at the head of the line.
It is our goal to transition veterans of wars by the sequence of the conflicts as long as donations from the public continue.
Q: Are terminally ill World War II veterans given any special priority?
A: YES! Such veterans go to the top of the list for the next flight departing to Washington, D.C. as part of our TLC Program. Not only are World War II veterans given this top priority, but also any terminally ill veteran, who has never been able to visit his or her memorial, is given the same priority. Please call us for more information.
Q: Can my wife (husband) go with me?
A: The only spouses who are permitted to go are those who are veterans themselves. There are more veterans than seats. Many World War II veterans have passed away while patiently waiting their turn. Hundreds more will not live long enough to visit their memorial. We must limit our trips to veterans.
Q: I am the widow of a World War II veteran. Can I go?
A: We simply do not have the resources, funding, or seating available to transport all the World War II veterans who are presently on our waiting list. Adding spouses and widows simply isn’t an option for our program at this time.
Q: Can my son, daughter, grandson, or other family member go as a guardian?
A: Each of our guardians has had special training and many of them have taken several trips. We do this to help ensure the safety of our veterans. Each guardian has multiple duties. Most importantly, guardians look after the needs and safety of his or her veteran(s) and completes assigned duties to see that the flight and tour bus activities are performed safely and in a timely manner.
Who will or will not serve as a guardian, and how many guardians will be needed, is the sole responsibility of the Honor Flight Columbus Guardian Coordinator. That decision is based upon many factors, such as:
- How many veterans are scheduled to go?
- Of the disabled veterans going, how many will have to be physically assisted getting on and off the bus?
- Which guardian applicants are most qualified? Medically trained, active duty military personnel and others who have previously participated in a flight are given top priority and serve as leadership members. The applicants physically capable of assisting in the lifting of World War II veterans is also a top priority.
Only under certain limited medical circumstances will a family member be selected as a guardian. A member of our medical team will need to consult with the veteran’s primary care physician. In addition, the family guardian must meet the various requirements, and take the three hour training program.
Q: What if the veteran is on oxygen or will need a wheelchair?
A: WHEELCHAIRS — About 60% of the veterans use wheelchairs. The motor coaches used in Washington are equipped with wheelchair lifts. If there is a possibility that a veteran may need a wheelchair during one of our trips, we ask that the veteran make that known on their application. A vet needs to be able to walk comfortably at least 100 yards between rests. For those veterans who are not able to walk comfortably at least 100 yards between resting times, we supply wheelchairs and people to push them. No motorized scooters or chairs are allowed.
OXYGEN — If the veteran requires oxygen, a prescription for the oxygen must be provided by the veteran’s healthcare provider, identifying the delivery method (mask or nasal cannula), frequency (as needed or continuously), and the rate of delivery (2-3 liters per minute). Honor Flight will provide an FAA-approved oxygen concentrator for use during the trip if local oxygen equipment is not available. We also provide oxygen cylinders to be used at the memorials. Veterans on oxygen are required to have oxygen cylinders available from their home to the departure airport and also on the return from their local airport back to their homes. No oxygen cylinders are permitted to be used on the aircraft. If the veteran requires oxygen during the trip, please make that known on the flight application.
For the latest fact sheet, click here.
For a video about the founding of Honor Flight, click here.
Our goal is to honor as many of these selfless “ordinary people who saved the world” as we can by providing them with no-cost, escorted trips to their memorial in Washington, D.C.