In May of 2019, I attended a family fun night at the Academy of Tucson Middle School. Tracy Shaw, the school’s office manager, and Susan Creenan, the principal, handed off a donation of $4,000 to Thom and Kathy Mansur on the behalf of the Honor Flight of Southern Arizona Organization.

This non-profit organization thanks veterans for all their sacrifices by transporting our heroes to Washington, D.C., to visit and reflect upon the memorial of the war they fought in. Every $1000 that is raised is able to give one veteran an all-expense paid trip to D.C. For many veterans this is “the most important” trip of their lives. To be able to provide for that is truly an honor.

The school has raised money, with a goal of sending two veterans per year through this organization, for the past five years. The annual fundraiser is kicked off by having Thom and Kathy Mansur present Honor Flight and their cause to the students. Then, the office holds a raffle for gift baskets created by students and donors from the community. This is followed by having volunteers spend Veterans Day working a bake sale held in front of the school for the public. During this time, they also accept monetary donations for the cause. That is how for the 5th annual fundraising event they were able to send four veterans to Washington, D.C, which is more than they have ever sent before and they strive to send even more in years to come.

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