Providing Healing for Combat Veterans Suffering from PTSD
Founded by American Airlines Captain (retired) Pat Lynch, a decorated Vietnam Veteran, Operation Freedom Bird was named after the aircraft or “Freedom Bird” flights that transported service members back to the United States after their tour of duty was over in war zones of Southeast Asia. Pat’s original vision was to reach out to fellow Vietnam Veterans and visit the Memorial Wall on Veterans Day. He believed that through sharing their experiences and confronting their feelings in a group environment, these warriors could pay tribute to their fallen comrades and seek closure to their own emotional war wounds.
Operation Freedom Bird is a four-day healing journey to Washington D.C. that helps Arizona combat veterans of all conflicts to reduce symptoms of unresolved PTSD, grief, and loss. Each year, approximately 50 Veterans are selected to participate in this healing journey on Veterans Day to visit the War Memorials in Washington D.C. Participants are selected by Veteran Center counselors throughout Arizona.
In addition to several visits to the National Mall, the program itinerary includes a trip to Arlington National Cemetery, the Iwo Jima Memorial, and the 9-11 Memorial located at the Pentagon. This program provides these veterans a unique opportunity to confront their feelings, share their experiences, and pay tribute to their fallen comrades-in-arms in a supportive environment of fellow veterans and concerned counselors.
OPERATION FREEDOM BIRD IS A 501-C (3) TAX-EXEMPT NON-PROFIT ORGANIZATION.
TAX ID NUMBER: EIN86-1002705