In The News

Media reports highlighting Honor Flight Savannah's people and programs.

Honor Flight - One Last Mission

Hilton Head Monthly
September 27, 2013

Honor Flight is a heartwarming documentary about four World War II veterans and a Midwest community coming together to give them the trip of a lifetime. Volunteers race against the clock to fly thousands of WWII veterans to Washington, D.C. to see the memorial constructed for them in 2004, nearly 60 years after their epic struggle.

The trips are called “Honor Flights” and for the veterans, who are in their late 80s and early 90s, it’s often the first time they’ve been thanked and the last trip of their lives. The 24-hour journey is full of surprises that deeply move all who are involved. It’s uncommon for World War II veterans to talk about the war, but the Honor Flight experience brings their stories out. Many veterans say, with the exception of their wedding day and the birth of their children, the trip is the best day of their life. Suzi Oliver, Nurse and Veterans Liaison with Hospice Care of the Lowcountry feels blessed to have chaperoned two Honor Flight trips.

“Not everyone can go on an Honor Flight, so with this film, we are bringing it to them,” Oliver said.

Oliver also stresses the importance of exposing the younger generations to the movie.

“While the Honor Flight program is meant to give something back to our veteran heroes, the profound appreciation for life in freedom, the shared stories and wisdom of the men in the movie transforms the lives of everyone who sees the film.”

A thousand World War II veterans die every day and getting them on an Honor Flight in time is a constant battle. The film features Orville Lemke, a former plumber and beloved father of nine who fights to hold off terminal cancer so he can make the trip, and Julian Plaster, an 89-year-old poet who has survived almost all of his friends and family.


Honor Flight also chronicles the stories of veterans Joe Demler and Harvey Kurz. They raise money for and promote the Honor Flight program to help fly as many of their fellow veterans as possible. Joe, a soft-spoken retired postmaster, was famously pictured in Life magazine as “the Human Skeleton” upon his liberation from a German POW camp. Days from death, he weighed just 70 pounds. His comedic sidekick, Harvey, saw the iconic flag go up at the Battle of Iwo Jima, unbeknownst to the  shoppers he bags groceries for at the local Pick n’ Save. Funds raised at this event will benefit the Hospice Care of the Lowcountry Veterans Caregiver Relief Fund and Honor Flight Savannah.

WHAT: Honor Flight: One Last Mission movie screening
WHEN: 7 p.m., Thursday, Oct. 24
WHERE: Seahawk Cultural Center at Hilton Head High School
DETAILS: Doors open at 6:15 p.m. for coffee and dessert. $25 per person. Tickets may be purchased by calling 843-706-2296, online at or at Burke’s Pharmacy.

Beaufort County Residents Take Savannah Honor Flight

Bluffton Today
September 11, 2013

Veterans from Beaufort County attended the Honor Flight Savannah trip to Washington, D.C., visiting the memorials built and dedicated to honor their sacrifices in past wars. Six were from Hilton Head Island, nine were from Bluffton and the others were from Ridgeland and Beaufort.

The group left from 165th Airlift Wing of the Georgia Air National Guard building in Savannah on Friday and returned Sunday.

WTOC News - 9/6/2013

WTOC's news coverage of the Honor Flight Savannah trip to Washington, D.C.

SCRTC Supports Honor Flight

Savannah Combat Readiness Training Center
September 6, 2013

Savannah's Combat Readiness Training Center and the 165th Airlift Wing was honored this morning to host WWII and Korean War Veterans as they prepared for their trip to Washington, D.C. The vets will be arriving a little later today, beginning their weekend tour of our nation's capital, the WWII and Korean War monuments and Arlington National Cemetery. What an honor to spend this morning with these heroes!

Beat Goes on at Armed Forces Festival

Savannah Morning News
May 23, 2013
By Kim Wade

Memorial Day on River Street just isn’t the same without the annual Armed Forces Festival at Rousakis Plaza. Fortunately, the sequester didn’t halt this year’s celebration.

Read more: Beat Goes on at Armed Forces Festival

WTOC News - 4/20/2013

WTOC news coverage of the 2013 Poker Run in Pooler, GA.

Rendezvous With History

by: Arnold Rosen 
January, 2013 

A Rendezvous With History 

"The day I went to Washington, D.C. on the Honor Flight was one of the greatest days of my life.  It was absolutely fantastic.  All the elements of that day were so exhilarating that I will never forget it..."

Click here to download the PDF article

11th Washington, D.C. Trip

October 19, 2012


Beaufort County veterans head to DC in October for Honor Flight

The Island Packet • September 16, 2012 • by Rachel Heaton:

Dick Fordyce spent his 18th birthday in Korea as a machine gunner in the U.S. Army.

"I just never regretted a minute of it," he said of the three years he spent in the Army and the year he fought in the Korean War. "A lot of times I wished I was somewhere else, but all in all it was what I wanted to be doing. I asked to go there."

But it's not the Korean War Veterans Memorial he's looking forward to seeing most when he visits Washington, D.C., on an upcoming Honor Flight.

It's the National World War II Memorial.

Read more: Beaufort County veterans head to DC in October for Honor Flight