TYSONS, Va., April 14, 2023 – Two dozen Puerto Rican veterans arrived at San Juan Airport to thunderous applause, live music and an enthusiastic crowd waving American and Puerto Rican flags. The vets returned from the first Honor Flight in history from the island to Washington, D.C. where they visited the monuments and memorials built in their honor. PenFed Credit Union, the nation’s second-largest federal credit union, partnered with the Honor Flight Network to make this unprecedented, all-expense paid trip a reality.
“PenFed loves Puerto Rico. PenFed loves veterans. Sponsoring this Honor Flight for Puerto Rican veterans was not only the trip of a lifetime for them, but it was also a beautiful way to express our gratitude and appreciation for their service and sacrifice,” said PenFed Credit Union President/CEO and PenFed Foundation CEO, James Schenck. “It was an honor to be in San Juan at the airport to welcome them home.”
The Honor Flight trip included veterans who served in WWII, Korea and Vietnam. One veteran, 101-year-old Angel Acevedo Bernal served in all three conflicts.
“When I heard about PenFed sponsoring this trip, it didn’t surprise me. What they say is what they do. PenFed made our dreams come true,” said Jose Irizarry, a Vietnam veteran who served in the 82nd Airborne Division. “I saw a Korean War veteran crying because he felt that everything he went through was erased today. We really appreciate this. A lot.”
The distinguished veterans visited several iconic locations in our nation’s capital, including the WWII, Korean and Vietnam War Memorials, as well as Arlington National Cemetery.
“PenFed’s generosity helped make this flight possible. The Honor Flight Network was proud to partner with the credit union to make this inspiring and emotional journey a reality for Puerto Rican veterans,” said Honor Flight Network CEO, Meredith Rosenbeck. “Honor Flight trips provide veterans with an empowering sense of camaraderie and in many cases, closure.”
About PenFed Credit Union
Established in 1935, Pentagon Federal Credit Union (PenFed) is America's second-largest federal credit union, serving 2.8 million members worldwide with $35.5 billion in assets. PenFed Credit Union offers market-leading certificates, checking, credit cards, personal loans, mortgages, auto loans, student loans, and a wide range of other financial services. Our mission is to empower members of our community to achieve their financial well-being. PenFed Credit Union is federally insured by the NCUA and is an Equal Housing Lender. To learn more about PenFed Credit Union, visit PenFed.org, like us on Facebook and follow us @PenFed on Twitter. Interested in working for PenFed? Check us out on LinkedIn. We are proud to be an Equal Employment Opportunity Employer.
About Honor Flight Network
The Honor Flight Network was formed in 2005 with a mission of honoring our nation’s veterans by bringing them to Washington, DC to visit the memorials and monuments dedicated to their service and sacrifice. The Honor Flight Network is currently comprised of over 130 hubs throughout the country dedicated to carrying out the Honor Flight mission. In addition to World War II veterans, the organization transports those who served in the Korean War, Vietnam War, intermediary operations, and in special cases of terminal illness or injury, veterans from more recent service eras. Since 2005, the Honor Flight Network has taken more than 250,000 veterans to Washington D.C. For more information, visit honorflight.org.
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