Thursday, June 20, 2013
DALLAS -- World War II veterans Virgil Trick, Ken Jacobson and Art Mosher have waited years to take their honor flight. Come Oct. 18, they'll finally get their chance.Trick, 95, Jacobson, 91, and Mosher, 91, all residents of Dallas Retirement Village, recently found out that spots opened for them for the October flight. The trio will join many other veterans from across Oregon to venture to Washington, D.C., and see the memorials honoring their action in the war.The Honor Flight Network, born in 2006 from similar programs in Ohio and North Carolina, has exploded in acclaim and fervor in recent years.As more and more World War II veterans die each year, the network's task becomes more important.Sue Lamb, development director for the Dallas Retirement Foundation, knows just how prudent that task is."It's an excellent program," Lamb said. "We've got a couple of our vets who have gone. It's one of those things for them that is just incredibly memorable."Each seat costs $1,000 and is paid for through donations and outside groups -- veterans are not charged a dime to fly. Virgil Trick This is the first time Dallas Retirement Village is in direct involvement with getting veterans on a flight. Those veterans at the village who previously took part in the program did so before they became residents.Lamb partnered with Southern Oregon Honor Flight in Roseburg, which took its inaugural flight in 2010, to get seats for Trick, Jacobson and Mosher."Art sits on the foundation board of directors and Virgil sits on the resident council, so it was logical that we would pick guys that could report back to our board," Lamb said. "If it's successful, we're going to be purchasing, on an ongoing basis, two seats on each flight to send at least one vet from here and one guardian from here."Dallas Retirement Village has 70 World War II veterans, so Lamb has her work cut out. Ken Jacobson Originally, there were only three seats available -- two veterans and a guardian -- but Trick was picked up by Southern Oregon Honor Flight, which allowed Lamb to add Jacobson to the group.The foundation is currently raising $3,000 to fly Jacobson, Mosher and Mosher's son, who offered to act as guardian.Many veterans who have been on the waiting list for years never get to take their flight, a reality that is not lost on Trick."I'm sure honored and appreciate that I get to go," Trick said. "I got on the list and I go up and come down. If somebody gets real sick, they get to go up."Though Trick still has some time before the flight, he is preparing for what he's been told is a whirlwind adventure and at the same time a somber remembrance. Art Mosher "I talked to a fella that's been on it. He says they're going to keep you busy. He'd never been so tired in all his life," Trick said. "I have a brother-in-law that didn't make it (through the war), so I hope to find his name on something." You Can Help * For more information or to make a donation: www.dallasretirementvillage.com or www.honorflightoforegon.org.