The AHEPAN - Winter 2015 - 18

VETERANS

Chapter 78 Helps a Brother Go On Honor Flight
PSG Nick Kavadas
Brother Joe Skora, Chapter 78, Merrillville/Gary, Ind., was able
to go on his Honor Flight thanks to Brother Nick Gianikos and
his fellow brethren from Chapter 78, which led the effort to fill
out the paper work and logistics to have him participate in the
Honor Flight program. Brother Skora participated on his Honor
Flight, Sept. 30, 2015.
The American veteran is one of our greatest treasures-the
men and women who answered our nation's call, especially
at times of our greatest need. At Honor Flight Chicago, their
mission is to thank and pay tribute to these heroes-especially
the World War II veterans-by bringing them to Washington,
D.C. for a day of honor and remembrance at no cost to them.
Brother Nick took Brother Joe to Midway Airport bright
and early arriving there at 4 a.m. to catch his charter flight
to Washington, D.C. to visit the WWII Memorial and other
national memorial sites. Eighteen hours later he would arrive
back from D.C. with the largest smile you can ever imagine.
On the return flight, every veteran receives a mail call
package which includes letters from family, friends, and even
strangers who just want to thank these brave men and women

for their sacrifice and service. Chapter 78 members wrote their
fair share of letters thanking Joe, who is usually first in line to
donate his time to help at all chapter events and philanthropic
programs, for his service to our nation.
Once they arrive back in Chicago, the veterans are led out
by Scottish bagpipes through an honor guard of Veteran bikers
all holding large American flags. Once they come down the
elevators they are greeted by another band playing patriotic
music and are welcomed, greeted, and cheered by thousands
of people.
It is very emotional and touching not only for the returning
WWII Veterans but for all those who came to support them and
also for the volunteer staff who give them first class treatment
the entire day. Members of AHEPA Chapter 78 came to Midway
Airport to welcome Brother Joe back home.
Brother Skora is 91-years young. When asked about his day,
he would simply reply, "One of the best of my life. I really have
no words to adequately express my experience today that I will
never forget."

Brothers of Chapter 78,
Merrillville/Gary, Ind., welcome
back home Brother Skora from
his Honor Flight that returned
from Washington, DC.

18

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THE AHEPAN ยท Winter 2015

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