Discovery Senior Living & Dream Flights Honor WWII Veterans with A Flight of Their Lives
Three residents of Aston Gardens At Pelican Marsh took to the skies aboard a WWII-era biplane as part of Operation September Freedom, the largest US barnstorming event led by nonprofit Dream Flights.
Aston Gardens At Pelican Marsh resident, Al Santo is among the 100,000 members of the Greatest Generation still with us today. Today, Al was the 5,000th Veteran to take part in a Dream Flight. Operation September Freedom is the first tour dedicated to honoring veterans who served in one particular war and our last opportunity to honor WWII veterans and thank them, one last time, for sacrificing their lives to ensure our freedoms.
“Military roots run deep within our Discovery family, from myself and members of our leadership team, right on through to the brave men and women who live and work in our communities every day,” said Richard J. Hutchinson, CEO, Discovery Senior Living. “We’re proud to partner with Dream Flights and will cherish every opportunity to create indelible memories in the lives of resident seniors and so many others from around the country.”
“Operation September Freedom may be our nation’s last opportunity to recognize and honor the men and women who defended our country in WWII,” said Darryl Fisher, founder and President of Dream Flights. Of the 16 million Americans who served in WWII, only an estimated 100,000 remain living today, with the youngest WWII veteran being age 95 in 2021.
“Honoring more than 1,000 WWII veterans during Operation September Freedom is an ambitious mission,” says Fisher. “We’re grateful for the support and resources Discovery Senior Living provides, and we’re proud to have them on our team of sponsors.”
Discovery Senior Living has been a steady supporter of armed forces veterans and related causes, with volunteer and charitable giving initiatives conducted multiple times each year at both the community and corporate levels.
About Dream Flights
Dream Flights is a 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to honoring seniors and military veterans by providing them the experience of a lifetime. Created and founded in 2011 by Darryl and Carol Fisher and the Fisher family, the organization provides 20-minute Dream Flights in its fleet of restored Boeing Stearman open-cockpit biplanes, the same aircraft used to train many military aviators in the late-1930’s and early-40’s. Dream Flights also helps veterans tell their stories, close the generation gap, and help promote a clearer understanding of ourselves and the world. Dream Flights’ newest initiative, called Operation September Freedom (OSF), is designed to specifically honor surviving WWII veterans throughout a two-month mission to fly as many of them as possible from August 1 through September 30.