Alaska Airlines is offering a free flight to Washington, DC for Hawaiian military vets

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Alaska Airlines announced this week that it is offering military veterans from the state of Hawaii a free flight to Washington DC to give them the opportunity to attend a special ceremony honoring their service.

The first flight will appropriately depart in the second week of November to coincide with Veterans Day on November 11th. Flights will continue into 2023, according to the Honolulu Star-Advertiser.

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The inaugural flight is sponsored in part by the Honor Flight Network, a nationwide organization that organizes such trips for veterans.

“Here we are, 17 years later (after the group’s inception in 2005), having flown over 250,000 veterans – it’s amazing,” said Matthew Shuman, Honor Flight’s chief executive officer, according to Star Advertiser. “But we have a hole in our system that’s here for the Hawaiian Islands. Just because veterans live here and are proud to call Hawaii home doesn’t mean we should ignore them.”

Shuman was referring to Hawaii’s distance from the nation’s capital, which is nearly 5,000 miles and a nine-hour flight. Getting from Honolulu to Washington can be an overwhelming and expensive endeavor, which is why Alaska Airlines’ offer is the most generous.

“When we talk about serving every single veteran and making sure no veteran is left behind, it’s more than words,” added Shuman. “We want every single veteran from Hawaii and the Pacific Islands, American Samoa, or any other island who has served the United States in uniform. I don’t care what you look like, what your orientation is – you have served honorably, let us serve you honorably.”

Tim Thompson, Alaska Airlines director of public engagement, said it was the airline’s prerogative.

“Alaska Airlines will be just one of many companies needed to bring these veterans to Washington DC. We will need the help of volunteers, guardians, other businesses and individuals to create a vibrant center here in Hawaii,” he said.


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