First Veterans ‘Honor Flight’ from Little Rock Set for October 20
Little Rock, Ark. – October 20, 2012 – Nearly 170 World War II veterans will visit memorials dedicated in their honor during a trip to Washington, D.C., on Saturday, October 20, as part of the first official Honor Flight from Little Rock.
Thanks to major donations from Tyson Foods, Inc., the Walmart Foundation and the Electric Cooperatives of Arkansas, two commercial jets have been chartered to fly 168 veterans free of charge from Bill and Hillary Clinton National Airport in Little Rock, Ark., to Washington, D.C., and back. The group, which will include veterans as old as 94, will see the World War II Memorial as well as other military memorials during their day in the nation’s capital.
"We are truly honored to be partnering with Tyson Foods and Walmart to provide this experience for our state's World War II veterans," said Duane Highley, president and chief executive officer for Arkansas Electric Cooperatives, Inc., (AECI) and Arkansas Electric Cooperative Corporation (AECC). "The sacrifices they made as young men and women ensured the freedoms we have today. We are proud to play a part in helping them see firsthand the national memorial dedicated to their service."
Flight organizers encourage the public to be at the Little Rock National Airport terminal at 7:30 p.m., Saturday evening, to be part of a special return reception for the veterans.
“This is a wonderful opportunity to show your support of these veterans from the ‘Greatest Generation,’ as well as enjoy patriotic music and flag waving,” said Melissa Lee, a Tyson Foods attorney who is chair of the company’s Veterans Business Resource Group (VBRG), which has been actively involved in supporting the Honor Flight program.
The Arkansas Army National Guard will provide the Color Guard and the Army Quartet Band. The State of Arkansas Adjutant General will meet the flights in D.C. and travel with the veterans on the tour of their memorial.
Anyone who wants to make a donation, is a World War II veteran who wants to go on a future trip, or has interest in volunteering to help with a future flight should call, e-mail or send a letter to:
Bill McKenzie, Tyson Aviation
10475 Tyson Place
Bentonville, AR 72712
Honor Flight Network is a national non-profit organization that started seven years ago in Ohio, with six small planes taking a dozen World War II veterans to see their memorial. Tyson and Walmart have been the primary sponsors of five Honor Flights from the Northwest Arkansas Regional Airport since 2009.
About the Electric Cooperatives of Arkansas
AECI is the statewide service organization for Arkansas' 17 electric distribution cooperatives, which provide retail electricity to nearly 500,000 members in Arkansas and surrounding states. AECC is the generation and transmission cooperative that provides wholesale electricity to the distribution cooperatives. Both are based in Little Rock. AECI, AECC and the distribution co-ops are known collectively as the Electric Cooperatives of Arkansas.
About Tyson Foods
Tyson Foods, Inc. (NYSE: TSN), founded in 1935 with headquarters in Springdale, Arkansas, is one of the world's largest processors and marketers of chicken, beef and pork, the second-largest food production company in the Fortune 500 and a member of the S&P 500. The company produces a wide variety of protein-based and prepared food products and is the recognized market leader in the retail and foodservice markets it serves. Tyson provides products and services to customers throughout the United States and more than 130 countries. The company has approximately 115,000 Team Members employed at more than 400 facilities and offices in the United States and around the world. Through its Core Values, Code of Conduct and Team Member Bill of Rights, Tyson strives to operate with integrity and trust and is committed to creating value for its shareholders, customers and Team Members. The company also strives to be faith-friendly, provide a safe work environment and serve as stewards of the animals, land and environment entrusted to it.
About Philanthropy at Walmart
Walmart and the Walmart Foundation are proud to support initiatives that are helping people live better around the globe. In May 2010, Walmart and its Foundation made a historic pledge of $2 billion through 2015 to fight hunger in the U.S. The Walmart Foundation also supports education, workforce development, environmental sustainability, and health and wellness initiatives. To learn more, visit www.walmartfoundation.org.
Contact: Gary Mickelson, Tyson Foods, 479-290-6111 or email@example.com