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Northwoods Honor Flight Benefit raises money for veterans

Story By Lilly Zoller
Local News Published 07/31/2021 5:38PM, Last Updated 08/01/2021 3:08PM
Rhinelander - "Just remember, young and old, we're all Americans," said Robert Smith, the Commander of the American Legion.

Another year of honoring those who served--and helping them take one more flight.

"I am so excited for everyone here and everyone is proud to be here because of where the money is going. It's such a good cause. Everything we raise here today goes to the Never Forgotten Honor Flight. 100 percent," said Dawn Panzer, the organizer of the Northwoods Honor Flight Benefit.

With a bugle performance and 21-gun salute from the honor guard, motorcyclists began their three-hour ride for a good cause.

"This is great. More people need to do this. Things that benefit our veterans, to help them, to show our support for what they did and what they gave for us. This is just a small way to do it," said Tim Holewinski, a participant in the event.

Organizers are hoping to raise at least $10,000 from this event, enough to send about 20 veterans to Washington DC.

After not being able to hold this event to its usual capacity due to the pandemic last year, community members were eager to get back to supporting a cause they are passionate about.

"It's just the right thing to do, right? You take a little time out of your day, pay some attention and give some credit to those folks who paid the ultimate sacrifice," said Rep. Rob Swearingen.

Attendees say that being able to see the community helping their local veterans take their final flight is an honor for each of them.

"It makes your heart just happy…and we need that today. We need to get back together as a nation, as a group," said Smith. 
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