Veterans honored with New Orleans trip
Published 12:11 am Thursday, October 30, 2014
NATCHEZ — Members of “The Greatest Generation” will hit the road next month to visit a museum honoring them and others who fought in World War II.
Local veterans will travel to New Orleans to visit the National World War II Museum Nov. 15 as part of the first Miss-Lou World War II Honor Ride.
Natchez resident and WWII veteran Michael Fields, who served in the U.S. Navy for five years in 1942, will be among those traveling to the museum.
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Fields served in the South Pacific during a time he said was much different than now, which is why people need to learn more about what went on during the war.
“It was an entirely different world than what it was like today,” Fields said. “I think people need to know about these things and learn about what was happening back then.”
If his health cooperates, Fields said he looks forward to returning to the museum he last visited more than a decade ago.
“It’s a great museum, and I always said I wanted to go back, but I’ve just never been able to,” Fields said. “I think this will be a great trip.”
Home With Heroes Foundation President Mark LaFrancis, who is helping to organize the trip, said the trip is an important one for all local veterans.
“Often, World War II veterans being up in age may not want to make the trip by themselves and others might not want to negotiate in and out of New Orleans,” LaFrancis said. “So we decided to plan an excursion and make it an event as opposed to just a drive there and back.”
LaFrancis said family of veterans or members of the public are invited to join along on the trip, which is free to all WWII veterans.
“I’ve learned, being a veteran myself, that veterans often have a stronger bond with other veterans and especially World War II veterans,” LaFrancis said. “This way they get to travel with what would their comrades in arms and share their individual experiences, but they can also share that experience with the others who are not veterans but want to travel.”
The trip will include a ride with refreshments, a gift bag, entrance to all the museum exhibits and viewing of the film “Beyond All Boundaries.”
The trip will begin at 7 a.m. with departure from Copiah-Lincoln Community College’s Natchez campus.
In order to attend, each veteran must have an escort able to help the veteran if needed. Cost for the escort to attend is $115.
For all other travelers, the fee is $125.
The deadline to sign up is Monday.
Registration forms are available at the Veterans Agent Office in Natchez, located on the second floor of the Senior Center on Washington Street, Allgood Business Machines on Highland Boulevard, Dianne’s Frame Shop on John R. Junkin Drive, Mims Jewelers on Main Street and Reed Insurance on Carter Street.
Forms can also be downloaded from the organization’s Facebook page at facebook.com/HomeWithHeroes.
For more information, contact LaFrancis at 601-442-0980 or Home With Heroes Vice President Jimmy Allgood at 601-597-6658.