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Ranking Member Bost Joins Rep. Roy, 74 Colleagues in Urging Interior Secretary Haaland to Resume Police Escorts for Veteran Honor Flights

Today, Rep. Mike Bost (R-Ill.), the Ranking Member of the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs, and Rep. Chip Roy (R-Tex.), released the following statements after joining 74 of their colleagues in sending a letter to Interior Secretary Deb Haaland requesting that the Department of the Interior resume providing the Honor Flight Network with the National Park Service’s United States Park Police (USPP) vehicular escort for Honor Flights traveling to Washington, DC.

“Since 2005, the Honor Flight Network has brought hundreds of thousands of veterans from all over the country to Washington to visit the memorials dedicated to them and their service. The Honor Flight Network carries out a solemn mission to recognize the service of generations of veterans. We owe it to them to do our part to ensure our nation’s heroes get the red-carpet treatment they have earned when they visit Washington. I am proud to join Rep. Roy and our colleagues in sending this letter to Secretary Haaland calling for police escorts to resume immediately,” said Ranking Member Bost.

“The least we can do is not screw up one of the few awesome things we’ve been getting right for a while,” said Rep. Chip Roy.

Full text of the letter the Members sent can be found here and below:

The Honorable Deb Haaland
U.S. Department of the Interior
1849 C Street, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20240

Dear Secretary Haaland,

We write to urgently request that the Department of the Interior (DOI) provide the Honor Flight Network with the National Park Service’s United States Park Police (USPP) vehicular escort services granted in previous years. Our brave veterans have made tremendous sacrifices to secure the freedoms we enjoy today. As a nation, we owe it to our heroes to give them the utmost honor and privilege that they deserve on their Honor Flight to Washington, D.C.

Since its founding, the Honor Flight Network has taken more than 245,000 World War II, Korean War, Vietnam War, and terminally ill veterans on an all-expense paid trip to visit our nation’s capital. Veterans visit – many for the first time – the very war memorials dedicated to their service to our country. During these trips, veterans share memories and accounts from their time in service, pay tribute to their lost comrades, and build important bonds with fellow participants. Honor Flights Hubs meticulously plan these experiences to further the Honor Flight Network’s vision of a country where “all of America’s veterans experience the honor, gratitude, and community of support they deserve.”

In order to accomplish this worthy vision, it is imperative that DOI provide USPP vehicular escort services to Honor Flight Hubs slated to arrive this spring. The escort services play a critical logistical role in ensuring these once-in-a-lifetime opportunities run smoothly and safely as Hubs navigate the busy National Mall. It is imperative that veterans – particularly those with physical disabilities – have the necessary parking access to ensure ease of entry to each war memorial to get the full experience they have earned. As a country, we have asked much of our men and women in uniform. Time and again, they answered the call. We request that you grant Honor Flight Hubs the necessary vehicular escorts our veterans have clearly earned.

We appreciate your attention to this important matter and look forward to your response.
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