This Veterans Day, American Airlines partnered with MGM Resorts International, the USO and the Gary Sinise Foundation to host more than 85 wounded warriors and their guests for the 11th annual Salute to the Troops event in Las Vegas.
The service members traveled Nov. 8 from Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA) in Washington D.C., aboard a chartered flight donated by American. The flight was worked by an all-volunteer flight crew. Another group of military service members from Camp Pendleton was bused to Las Vegas. All arrived to a hero’s welcome.
“American Airlines and its more than 130,000 team members have a deep sense of pride and gratitude for all who have served, including our team members, and their families, who have served and sacrificed to protect our great nation and our freedoms, every day, but especially on Veterans Day. These families have our sincere thanks and gratitude,” said David Seymour, Senior Vice President of Operations at American and graduate of the United States Military Academy at West Point.
“From the pilots and flight attendants who volunteer their time and skills to serve these special heroes to the airport team members who put together meaningful departure and arrival celebrations, the American team is passionate about this event. We are honored to play a part in providing these ill and injured service members and their guests a well-deserved week of healing, relaxation and fun.”
During their time at Salute to the Troops, heroes are being treated to helicopter tours, dinners, adventure outings, sightseeing and a concert on Fremont Street by Gary Sinise and the Lt. Dan Band.
“On behalf of our nation’s wounded, ill and injured troops and their caregivers, I can tell you American’s continuing generosity and support mean a great deal to those who have sacrificed so much for our freedom,” said Elaine Rogers, President and CEO of USO-Metro. “We’re incredibly thankful to American for helping us show the gratitude of the American people for our troops and their families in such an impactful way.”
“Salute to the Troops has become a time-honored tradition at the Gary Sinise Foundation,” said Elizabeth Fields, Chief Operating Officer at the Gary Sinise Foundation.
“We’re honored to have joined with our partners, like American Airlines, in celebrating our nation’s heroes whose selfless service has contributed to the freedom Americans enjoy every day. At the core of every Gary Sinise and the Lt. Dan Band concert is honor, gratitude, and rock and roll.”
More than 7,000 American Airlines team members currently serve or are veterans of the United States armed forces. American has a long history of supporting the nation’s military and their families, both in their communities and when they travel. American’s Military and Veterans Initiative program supports more than 100 military nonprofit organizations, including the Gary Sinise Foundation, the Medal of Honor Society, the Elizabeth Dole Foundation and the Independence Fund. Additionally, American’s Veteran Military Employee Business Resource Group members are active in the communities where they live and work volunteering for initiatives that support service members and their families. These team members assist with planeside honors for fallen servicemen and women, provide support for Honor Flights and next month’s Snowball Express, which honors Gold Star families with a trip to Disney World.
American offers travel amenities for active-duty service members including priority boarding, preferred seating and upgrades (when available), waived baggage fees and priority baggage delivery in the claim area. New this November, American is proud to partner with Veterans Advantage to offer VetRewards military service members and their families a discount of up to 10% on qualifying flights marketed and operated by the airline. This discount is available to active duty service members, veterans, members of the National Guard and Reserve and their eligible family members for tickets in the Main Cabin.
“As a veteran of the Unites States Air Force with a long line of veterans in my family, I consider it an honor and a privilege to fly these exceptional individuals who have sacrificed for our country,” said Captain John DuBarry, a pilot based in Charlotte, North Carolina.