Honor Flight Syracuse honors American veterans with the support of fundraising drives

On April 22, 2023, local veterans from the Central New York area took part in Honor Flight Syracuse, a guided program created to honor veterans by sending them to visit the national monuments in Washington, D.C.

A proud sponsor of the Honor Flight mission, Bottle & Can Retrieval Centers (TOMRA Collection US) have supported Honor Flight for the past two years with a fundraising event in the spring and fall.

Honor Flight event at airport
Honor Flight event at airport
Donations take place in two ways:

  • Bottle & Can donates $0.06 for cans and bottles collected at a fundraising event at the Destiny USA Mall parking lot in Syracuse.
  • Bottle & Can donates $0.01 for every unit collected by its redemption centers in the area that Honor Flight covers—14 centers in the following counties: Onondaga, Jefferson, St. Lawrence, and Oneida.

Last year, TOMRA helped donate more than $40,000 (that's about 800,000 cans collected by the community!) through the spring and fall drive combined. This year’s total count is still in process, with approximately $23,000 already raised!

The mission

Since its founding in 2006, Honor Flight Syracuse has guided over 250,000 veterans to Washington, D.C. Thanks to sponsors and supporters over the years, the trip comes at no cost to veterans.

The mission on April 22, Mission 18, marked the 11th anniversary of Honor Flight Syracuse. Veterans were transported to the nation’s capital to visit the national memorials dedicated to their service and sacrifice. Upon arriving in D.C., they were greeted with a water canon salute and smiling faces. Throughout the day, they visited commemorative sites throughout the city, returning late in the evening to New York. Upon their return, veterans were greeted with a Welcome Home ceremony and gathering. Spectators turned up to support and cheer on the veterans.

Making an impact

Through the help of supporters and sponsors, Honor Flight Syracuse creates a memorable experience for veterans that spreads its impact throughout the community. The veterans were moved by the large, supportive crowds that cheered, waved flags, and thanked them for their service.

It is such an honor for me to there as a representative of TOMRA and Bottle & Can Retrieval Centers. Seeing the tears in the eyes of the veterans as they received such as amazing welcome home was overwhelming!

Jim Meola Bottle & Can Retrieval Centers
Honor Flight event at airport

TOMRA Collection US is proud to sponsor Honor Flight Syracuse and gives thanks to our veterans for their service and sacrifice to our country.

Supporting the cause

Retired Executive Vice President of TOMRA, Stephen Nee, is the director of volunteers and a member of the Honor Flight Board. Nee’s commitment to honoring local veterans is also personal—his father served in World War II.

TOMRA volunteers went above and beyond this year, visiting a disabled veteran’s home to collect his 30 bags of cans when he was unable to attend the donation drive over the weekend. While the veteran was not participating in the flight himself, he was helping to fund the travels of fellow veterans in the area. It was a truly remarkable demonstration of the kindness and compassion of many supporters and volunteers of Honor Flight Syracuse.

Bottle & Can Retrieval Centers and TOMRA thank everyone who collected, donated, and contributed to this year’s event. We look forward to the next Honor Flight mission.

About Bottle & Can Retrieval Centers and TOMRA

TOMRA New York Recycling (TNYR) is a majority owner of Bottle & Can Retrieval Centers in Upstate New York and partners with organizations to sponsor fundraising throughout the year. Learn more about Bottle & Can Retrieval Centers here.