Dream Foundation partners with VA to fulfill final dreams for Veterans

Sixty-eight-year-old John Lechowicz of Yorkville, Illinois, is a Vietnam Veteran who served four years as a member of the U.S. Air Force. He is in his final days of life.

Lechowicz wrote to Dream Foundation for help fulfilling his final dream.  As selfless as his service was to our nation, so too was his dream. While in Vietnam, Lechowicz saw troops’ bodies removed from cargo planes and later, coffins loaded onto planes to return to the U.S

“I feel that even though I do not know all their names, I would somehow connect with them by just touching the [Vietnam Veterans Memorial] wall,” Lechowicz wrote.

In September, Lechowicz’s dream was fulfilled.  He and his friend, caretaker and fellow Vietnam Veteran, Ed Kurz, traveled to Washington, D.C., with the help of Dream Foundation’s Dream for Veterans program and Honor Flight’s Their Last Chance program.

Lechowicz and Kurz visited the National World War II Memorial, Lincoln Memorial and the Korean War Veterans Memorial.  Later in the day, they continued their tour visiting the U.S. Capitol, the U.S. Navy Memorial and the Naval Museum.  They saw the Marine Corps War Memorial (Iwo Jima Memorial), the U.S Air Force Memorial, and watched the Changing of the Guard at Arlington National Cemetery.

A particularly memorable part of Lechowicz and Kurz’s trip was when both men were honored for their service and presented with Vietnam War Commemoration Pins at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial by John McLaughlin, Honor Flight chairman of the board and a fellow Veteran.