Kansas honor flights theft will not affect Oklahoma's program

The program that flies Oklahoma World War II veterans to Washington, D.C., to visit war memorials will not be affected by turmoil in a similar program in Kansas, where a former director was arrested on a complaint of stealing more than $100,000 from the group.
BY BRYAN DEAN bdean@opubco.com Modified: October 26, 2012 at 7:23 pm •  Published: October 27, 2012

Oklahoma's honor flight program will not be affected by the arrest of the former head of a Kansas chapter who is accused of stealing more than $100,000 from the program, organizers said Friday.

LaVeta Miller, former head of the Central Prairie Honor Flight program, was arrested Thursday on a complaint of theft by deception in excess of $100,000.

She was fired from the group in July after financial records showed about $110,000 missing.

The honor flight program is a national effort to fly World War II veterans to Washington, D.C., to visit the World War II memorial and other memorials commemorating their service.

Gary Banz, executive director of Oklahoma Honor Flights, said each honor flight hub is a stand-alone group that does its own fundraising and organizes flights independently of any other group.

“We are authorized to use the honor flight name,” Banz said. “We are organized as a separate 501C3 registered with the state of Oklahoma. We are accountable to a local governing board, and we are doing well.”

Oklahoma Honor Flights completed its sixth flight of the year Wednesday, the 11th flight since the program began two and a half years ago.

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At a glance

Completed flights

May 17, 2010, Oklahoma City, 99 veterans

Oct. 12, 2010, Oklahoma City, 99 veterans

May 4, 2011, Oklahoma City, 97 veterans

June 8, 2011, Tulsa, 104 veterans

Oct. 12, 2011, Oklahoma City, 103 veterans

April 18, 2012, Tulsa, 103 veterans

May 4, 2012, Lawton, 93 veterans

June 6, 2012, Oklahoma City, 101 veterans

Sept. 12, 2012, Oklahoma City, 104 veterans

Sept. 25, 2012, Tulsa, 102 veterans

Oct. 24, 2012, Oklahoma City, 99 veterans

Total completed to date: 11 flights for 1,104 veterans

Upcoming flights

April 17, 2013, leaving from Tulsa

June 2013, pending

September 2013, pending

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