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  • Springfield News-Leader

    Honor Flight of the Ozarks prepares for first flight of 2024 on May 29

    By Gary Ellison,

    29 days ago

    Honor Flight of the Ozarks held a training session for 81 veterans and 81 guardians Sunday, May 19, at Springfield-Branson National Airport for the first Honor Flight of 2024.

    The daylong trip to Washington, D.C., will take the veterans to visit their memorials. This trip will have one veteran from World War II; 16 from the Korean Conflict, including one woman; and the remainder from Vietnam, including two women. One veteran from Arkansas is going on the trip.

    One of the Vietnam-era veterans is Dennis Slane, of Springfield, who was in the Army stationed in Germany. His son, Brent Slane, will accompany his father as a guardian. Brent Slane was the producer of the Ozarks Public Television documentary "In Gratitude: Honor Flight of the Ozarks." Brent said his dad "is especially eager to witness the changing of the guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery, and I'm grateful to be along with him to experience it."

    The Honor Flight departs the Springfield airport about 5 a.m. May 29 and should return between 9 and 9:30 p.m. the same day. Flight coordinator David Snider suggests anyone interested in welcoming these veterans home should be at the airport between 8 and 8:30 p.m.

    "It is a real patriotic event and the veterans, especially those who served during Vietnam, really appreciate the Welcome Home celebration with band music, flags and cheers," he said.

    Any veteran who lives in southwest Missouri and northwest Arkansas who received an honorable discharge from the military is eligible to go on an Honor Flight at no cost. The veteran must have served during World War II, Korea, the Vietnam era or the Gulf War. They did not have to serve overseas. Guardians who accompany the veterans take the trip for $500. Veteran, guardian and volunteer applications are available at

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