How to Apply
Honor Flight Savannah Guardians accompany our veterans on their trip to Washington, D.C. and are responsible for ensuring their comfort, enjoyment, and safety at all times. Every veteran is assigned one guardian for the duration of the entire trip to Washington D.C. Guardians and veterans to get to know each other, build a personal relationship and many of our Guardians continue to communicate with their veterans months and years after their Honor Flight.
Guardians are volunteers and are asked to fund their portion of the trip. The total cost to fund each Guardian’s trip is $500.00. The Guardian fee (donation) is required to be paid entirely in advance of each trip. To adequately prepare for the responsibility, guardians are required to complete a brief, but comprehensive training session before the scheduled trip. Once you have been selected as a Guardian you will be notified of the Guardian training date, location and asked to pay your guardian donation in advance of the trip.
If you would like to learn more about being a Guardian please visit our Guardian FAQ page.
Should you have any further questions please do not hesitate to contact us.
Honor Flight Guardians
Are you interested in volunteering as a Guardian? The first step to becoming a Guardian is applying via our application below. Guardians can apply by filling out the online form or downloading the PDF and mailing or emailing it to us. If you have any questions about being a Guardian, please visit our Guardian FAQ page or contact us.
What Guardians are saying about
their experience with
Honor Flight Savannah...
I have volunteered as a Guardian six times, and each trip has been a fantastic event. Honor Flight Savannah
is a great organization that is evident on each trip and all the work done behind the scenes. It has been my honor and pleasure to be part of this wonderful charity for our veterans.
The send-off ceremony in Savannah made a significant impression on myself and my veteran. I also felt the Washington, D.C. tour guide was terrific!
I have been a guardian twice with Honor Flight Savannah and will likely apply to volunteer again and recruit other qualified guardians for this incredible experience!
Seeing how much the veterans got out of the trip brought tears to my eyes. I am so thankful for Honor Flight Savannah. It was indeed a privilege to be a guardian;
I highly recommend volunteering to accompany a veteran on a trip to Washington, D.C.
BEHIND THE SCENES
CWO 2 Robert Streeper, wrote this article for The Newspaper of the 3rd Infrantry Division, The Frontline, to share his experience as a Guardian in June of 2014:
Escorting Living Legacy Honor Flight Savannah to Washington D.C.
On May 16, I had the honor of being a guardian for two World War II veterans and one Korean War veteran on their trip to Washington D.C., with Honor Flight Savannah. This organization raises money to bring veterans from World War II, the Korean War and other conflicts, who have serious medical conditions to Washington D.C., so they can see the monuments that our country has raised in their honor.
I wanted to do this event because I enjoy helping out veterans and really enjoy their stories. When I found out about Honor Flight, I was hoping to get picked to be a guardian so I could share this experience with them. I was lucky to be one of the few who was selected.
As guardians, we met the veterans we’d be escorting on the trip that morning at the 165th Airlift Wing in Savannah. There were coffee and other assorted breakfast items for everyone to take in before the trip.
Major General John Murray, 3rd ID commander; Command Sgt. Maj. Christopher Gilpin, 3rd ID CSM; and "Rocky," the 3rd ID mascot, were there to greet the veterans and say a few words. Before the buses were loaded there was a short ceremony where a letter was read from the wife of a veteran, Navy Store Keeper 3rd Class Dan Thompson, who was scheduled to go on the trip but passed away in January. This served as reminder that many of our World War II veterans are passing away without the chance to see the memorials erected in their honor.
The veterans were shocked as they headed out to the bus and they were greeted by a veteran’s motorcycle club that had American flags lined on both sides of the sidewalk leading up to the bus. Also, Soldiers from the 3rd Combat Aviation Brigade and Airmen from the 165th Airlift Wing saluted the veterans as Murray and Gilpin gave them one last handshake at the bus doors before we departed. The motorcycle club then escorted the bus until it reached I-95.
Once on the road, the war stories started to come out as veterans began talking to each other and the guardians. One Air Force veteran served in World War II, Korea, and Vietnam. One of my veterans told me how he served under Gen. Patton. I sat there like a little kid in a candy store listening and trying to take it all in. These veterans are our living military legacy.
Dinner was scheduled to be served at 7:30 p.m. after our arrival, but we arrived around 10:00 p.m. because of a tire problem. Since we were going to be late, the restaurant manager asked the staff if anyone could stay and help serve the veterans, and the whole staff who was supposed to be off waited for us to arrive. The servers all had smiles and greeted the veterans thanking them for their service. That night I could not have been more proud that my fellow Americans would also sacrifice their time for the veterans.
When we left the hotel the next morning we were given a bus tour of Washington D.C. The veterans were taking in the city because they were seeing it for the first time.
Our first stop was the World War II Memorial. Waiting for us to arrive was an admiral, an Air Force major general, and an Army major general, along with military members from each branch. All the veterans were gathered to honor them in a ceremony, to include the memory of Navy Store Keeper 3rd Class Dan Thompson. The military color guard marched out in front and a bugler played taps. The Honor Flight veterans and the active duty there to see them all saluted when taps were being played and tears ran down the faces of some of the veterans. This was very emotional seeing these veterans remember their Fallen comrades. After the ceremony was over, people started to form a line to shake their hands while others would just walk up to the veterans and say thank you.
Next we went to the Iwo Jima Memorial and to the Air Force Memorial and had a box lunch after. While eating lunch the veterans started telling stories of the rations they had while at war. Their stories made me really appreciate our chow halls while I was deployed.
Following lunch the tour headed to Arlington National Cemetery to watch the Changing of the Guard at the Tomb of the Unknowns. After the change was complete, a member of the Honor Guard thanked the veterans and talked about the history of the Honor Guard and the cemetery. Then Lt. Gen. James Huggins from the Pentagon greeted the veterans and thanked them for their service. Huggins then met the veterans at John C. McKinney Memorial Stables where members of the 3rd U.S. Infantry Regiment explained the history of the stables and gave a tour.
Once Huggins said his good-byes to the veterans it was on to Korean War Veterans Memorial, Vietnam Veterans Memorial, and the Women in Military Service for America Memorial. While at the Korean War Veterans Memorial, all the veterans from that war stood together for a picture. The veterans then walked to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall. While we were there a Marine veteran found a name of a friend he served with. This was my third time seeing the wall but being there seeing this Marine find his friend’s name and stand there pointing at it sent chills down my spine.
Our last stop in Washington D.C. was to the U.S. Navy Memorial. We had dinner next and after everyone received their food, all the veterans talked about the day of visiting the memorials. I was listening to a group talk about how surprised they were that generals were waiting to see them. There was a lot of talk about how much they appreciated having memorials in honor of them, their fellow patriots and for the Fallen. After dinner was finished it was time to head back on the bus for the drive back to Savannah.
This trip was amazing, not only for the veterans, but for me getting the chance to be a guardian to escort these veterans. I could listen to the stories of their experiences during the wars of their time all day long. There is another trip scheduled for September 5. For more information on Honor Flight Savannah, visit their website at www.honorflightsavannah.org.