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December 24, 2009

Governor Quinn Encourages Donation of Unused Air Miles to Support Families of Wounded Servicemembers
After Visiting Troops in Germany, Governor Honors Program That Reunites Wounded Heroes with their Families

CHICAGO – December 24, 2009. Upon his return today from visiting troops at Landstuhl Regional Medical Center and Fisher House in Germany, Governor Quinn encouraged the public to support Operation Hero Miles, a program that supports servicemembers who were injured in Iraq or Afghanistan. Operation Hero Miles assists families allowing them to visit their loved ones who are recovering in military hospitals around the world through the donation of unused frequent flyer miles.

“I encourage everyone to honor those who fight for our freedom by supporting Operation Hero Miles,” Governor Quinn said. “The donation of unused frequent flyer miles is a convenient way for the people of Illinois to show appreciation for our heroes.”

Administered by Fisher House, Operation Hero Miles is a not-for-profit foundation that provides a “home away from home” at little or no cost for family members of military personnel receiving medical care at military and Veterans Affairs medical centers around the world.

Governor Quinn just returned from his sixth visit to Landstuhl Regional Medical Center and Fisher House in Germany. Landstuhl is often the first stop on a long road home for many soldiers wounded in Iraq or Afghanistan. As the largest American hospital outside of the United States, Landstuhl Regional Medical Center has 162 beds and, on average, 16 admissions daily, 37,000 outpatient visits monthly, 510 operations monthly, and three births daily.

While in Germany, Governor Quinn hand-delivered hundreds of holiday cards to Illinois servicemembers that were made by Illinois schoolchildren. United Airlines generously donated transportation of the packages of cards to Germany.

For additional information on Operation Hero Miles, please visit FisherHouse.org. To date, the program has issued more than 18,000 donated tickets, with a savings worth nearly $25 million to military families.

Through Operation Hero Miles, airline tickets available for families of military can only be used for travel related to a medical condition. Servicemembers being treated as a result of an injury can also request a ticket to travel home while on medical leave with permission from their doctor.

Operation Hero Miles partners with the following air carriers:

  • AirTran Airways
  • Alaska Airlines
  • American Airlines
  • Continental Airlines
  • Frontier Airlines
  • Midwest Airlines
  • Northwest Airlines
  • United Airlines
  • US Airways

RAW TAPEGovernor urges families to donate unused frequent flier miles to soldiers


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