Lake Zurich's Flightless Honor Flight canceled amid coronavirus concerns

  • World War II veteran Walt Hermann, 95 of Wonder Lake, was welcomed home after a traditional Honor Flight in 2015. The area's first Flightless Honor Flight, which was to be held at Lake Zurich High School on Sunday, was canceled over coronavirus fears.

    World War II veteran Walt Hermann, 95 of Wonder Lake, was welcomed home after a traditional Honor Flight in 2015. The area's first Flightless Honor Flight, which was to be held at Lake Zurich High School on Sunday, was canceled over coronavirus fears. Daily Herald File Photo, 2015

 
 
Updated 3/10/2020 4:55 PM

Organizers have canceled the Flightless Honor Flight set for this Sunday in Lake Zurich because of coronavirus concerns.

The event, which was to be held at Lake Zurich High School, was created to give military veterans unable to experience the traditional Honor Flight to Washington, D.C., a special experience of their own. The event was organized by JourneyCare, Lake Zurich Area School District 95 and Lake County Honor Flight.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

About 70 veterans ranging in age from 70 to 105 had signed up for the event, said Linda Rockwell, JourneyCare's veterans program manager. She said organizers will try to reschedule as soon as possible.

"It's very, very sad but we can't risk people's health," Rockwell said. "Our heroes are precious, we can't put them in jeopardy."

According to the Centers for Disease Control, older adults and people with underlying health conditions are at an increased risk for severe illness and complications from COVID-19.

Each veteran at the event was to have a guardian, and Rockwell said family members of veterans have been calling to ask if they could bring more guests along.

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The veterans were to receive thank you cards submitted by community members. Rockwell said any letters addressed to specific veterans will be sent before the event is rescheduled.

"At least they'll have the letters," Rockwell said.

Rockwell said organizers have begun reaching out to notify veterans the event has been canceled.

For area veterans to take part in the Flightless Honor Flight, they must be 65 or older, have served in any war or peacetime era and have not taken an Honor Flight to Washington, D.C., before. They can be either unable or unwilling to fly because of health.

For more information on the event, visit journeycare.org/honor or call Rockwell at (847) 556-1778.

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