FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WFFT) - Typically, Honor Flight Northeast Indiana go on a few flights each year, taking veterans to Washington DC. Covid-19 forced them to rescheduled the April and May 2020 flights to September and October, which were rescheduled as well. Now, the flight scheduled for April 2021 has to be rescheduled.
One of the veterans who's been on the waitlist is US Air Force Veteran Edward Mayo. He moved to Fort Wayne from Tennessee in June 2019. When he arrived he says he saw a pamphlet for the Honor Flight and signed right up.
"I sent my name in and Dennis called me almost right away and so I was put on the list and I think we’ve missed three times now of not going," Mayo said.
He and hundreds of other veterans and guardians have to wait until after April 2021 to go, because COVID-19 is too high a risk to take, even for spring of next year.
Mayo said, "It’s very disappointing, and with the virus you don’t know what your health is going to bring up or if you’re even going to be around when the next time comes."
Honor Flight Northeast Indiana President Dennis Covert says postponing Honor Flights is tough, both on the veterans and everyone who works to get things off the ground.
"A lot of volunteer hours it takes to book an honor flight and get it ready to go," Covert said. "It’s disappointed for everybody, but I think everybody understands the reality of travelling with the covid virus today."
Most of the people going on the Honor Flights would be considered high risk for contracting COVID-19 because of their age. so while several of those on the waiting list who spoke with FOX 55 were disappointed in the cancellation, including Mayo, they agree with the decision.
"There’s nothing you can do about it except wait it out and hope that you’ll be able to go," Mayp said.
Covert says the next Honor Flights are scheduled to happen in late May and early June of 2021, but they’re not sure yet how to logistically move people around to reschedule their flights or if they’ll be able to go at all if COVID-19 is still a concern.