Local Honor Flight trip still scheduled despite shutdown - NEWS10 ABC: Albany, New York News, Weather, Sports

Local Honor Flight trip still scheduled despite shutdown


COBLESKILL, N.Y. -- The government shutdown has led to the closing of national monuments, including the WWII memorial, but some exceptions are being made for certain visitors -- like the veterans who make the long journey to see the site.

"I was willing to get arrested because I feel that strongly about it," said Greg Furlong, Chairman of the Leatherstocking Honor Flight organization.

Furlong wasn't going to let any government bickering get in the way of the 30 veterans set to fly down to Washington, D.C. to visit the World War II Memorial.

"To have the rug pulled out from under us would've been devastating," he said.

Wednesday afternoon, the Honor Flight team got together to come up with a contingency plan.

"We need to talk about what will happen if something were to come up and we need to be prepared," said Veterans Coordinator, Liz Reinhart.

But now it looks like the Honor Flight veterans will be allowed in.

"This is their last shot to see it.  If we don't get them there this trip, they aren't going to get there," said Furlong. "That would be a shame and it would all be due to political infighting."

The group has been organizing Honor Flights for years now and they say the joy it brings the men is indescribable.

"These guys earned this, it is not a privilege.  They paid for that memorial with their blood sweat and sacrifice."

The veterans are set to leave on October 19th.

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