The Greatest Generation has not been forgotten by a new generation of St. Ambrose Fighting Bees athletes.
A $500 donation from St. Ambrose athletes and Fighting Bees athletic supporters will help pay the way of one veteran of World War II or the Korean conflict on the next Honor Flight of the Quad Cities in April. The check was presented on Dec. 4 to local hub director Bob Morrison by women's basketball and soccer player Ashley Dexter and women's basketball coach Krista Van Hauen on behalf of the athletics department.
The funds were among those donated by athletes and the athletic department in September along with money athletes collected in the stands at the Sept. 15 Military Appreciation Day football contest at Brady Street Stadium.
Dexter, a senior majoring in finance and accounting, said the sacrifices of veterans who served more than a half-century before she was born have not escaped her attention.
"It has always been something that interested me, learning about World War II and the people who served," she said. "There is just great pride. They defended America and did their job."
Van Hauen's grandfather served in World War II and she said she was moved and honored to lead Dexter and her teammates on a tour of Pearl Harbor when the 2011-2012 Queen Bees traveled to a tournament in Hawaii in December of last year.
Andrew Gates, coordinator of veterans recruitment and services at St. Ambrose, said an additional $500 will be donated to QC Stand Down, a project to assist homeless veterans in the area.