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MANSFIELD -- The Richland County Honor Bus is now accepting in-person applications from veterans for a trip to Washington, D.C., in September, but applications must be submitted soon, director and founder Dean Krance said.

The next Honor Bus trip is scheduled for Sept. 10 through 12. The deadline to apply is Aug. 1.

Veterans and guardians are no longer required to request or submit an application by mail. Krance said he does not want veterans to miss the deadline due to delayed or missing mail.

Anyone can come to the the AmVets Post 26 at 1100 W. 4th Street in Mansfield to request a veteran or guardian application. Only one application form per person is allowed.

The Richland County Honor Bus takes area veterans to Washington, D.C. to see war memorials, monuments and other historic sites. The trip, including food and lodging, is free for veterans.

“For honorably discharged veterans, it’s completely free of charge. They won’t pay a dime,” Krance said.

If a veteran needs extra support while traveling, a friend or family member can apply to accompany them as a guardian. Guardians must pay $375.

Veterans and guardians will be notified after Aug. 10 if they were selected for the trip.

Veterans from anywhere are welcome to apply, but priority will be given to veterans in the Mansfield/Richland county area. Priority will also be given first to older veterans and those with health issues.

The Honor Bus can transport about 50 people. Its most recent trip was in 2019 (a 2020 trip was cancelled due to the pandemic.) Forty six veterans went on the 2019 trip, including two World War II service members who were both 93 at the time.

Sites on the group’s itinerary include the Arlington National Cemetery, Iwo Jima Memorial, World War II Memorial, Vietnam Wall, Korean War Memorial, Lincoln and Jefferson Memorials, Smithsonian Museums and the Flight 93 Memorial in Pittsburgh.

For more information, call 419-565-3769 and ask for Dean Krance.

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Staff reporter focused on education and features. Clear Fork alumna. Always looking for a chance to practice my Spanish. You can reach me at katie.ellington@richlandsource.com