Captain (ret) Steve Shepard and Intelligence Specialist Master Chief (AW) (ret) David Mattingly supported Honor Flight San Diego’s recent flight that brought 85 Vietnam Veterans of Navy Helicopter Attack (Light) Squadron 3 (HAL-3) Seawolves to Washington, DC on 1 October 2022. The all-volunteer squadron was commissioned in 1966 specifically to support Navy SEALs, Mobile Riverine forces, and joint military operations in the Mekong Delta region of South Vietnam.
The Honor Flight Network is a national network of independent hubs working together to honor veterans who served from World War II to the Korean War and through to Vietnam. They also serve catastrophically ill and injured veterans from all service eras. The Network honors these veterans by providing them with an all-expenses paid trip to the memorials in Washington, D.C.
Captain Shepard has been involved with San Diego Honor Flight since 2012. He has participated in 17 flights as both a guardian for the veterans and a dinner keynote speaker. (Guardians are companions who physically assist the veterans at the airport, during the flight, at the hotel, and at the memorials). He has also served as a keynote speaker for the National Honor Flight summits.
Master Chief Mattingly is a volunteer with Honor Flight Tour Guides. He started volunteering with Washington, D.C. Honor Flight Volunteers as an airport greeter and guardian. After riding as a guardian for two years, he stepped into the role of a volunteer tour guide. Hubs throughout the country request local tour guides to provide a narrative of the history and lore of Washington, D.C., its memorials, monuments, and the sacred ground of Arlington National Cemetery. From ISCM Mattingly’s perspective, “There is no better way to spend a day than on a bus of visiting veterans.”
For more information about Honor Flights go to https://www.honorflight.org/ for a hub near you.