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For the first time in Orange County, more than 20,000 military members and their families will receive the hallmark USO airport welcome. Snyder Langston, the Irvine-based builder, agreed to design and build the center as an in-kind donation.

For 73 years, USO centers have welcomed troops and their families at airports across the nation. The center will be located in the Airport’s Terminal B, next to the baggage claim area on the Arrivals Level. Staffed by volunteers, the center will feature a canteen, movies, travel assistance and Wi-Fi. More than 20,000 military members traveling on orders pass through John Wayne Airport each year and Active and reserve members and their dependents are welcome, as well as military retirees on a space available basis. All services are complimentary for troops and guests.

Bob Hope USO credited the Board of Supervisors and John Wayne Airport, and their dedication to supporting troops and their families, for making the center a reality. The County is leasing the space to Bob Hope USO under a five-year agreement for $1 per year.

The Bob Hope USO serves Orange, Los Angeles, San Bernardino, Riverside and Ventura Counties, and is a private, non-profit charitable organization Although the USO is chartered by Congress, they receive no funding from the government or the Department of Defense.

All services are provided at no charge to the guests, who are often in transit and heading into harm’s way. The USO is  totally dependent on funding from individuals, philanthropic service organizations and generous corporate and foundation donors to provide these services as well as build, furnish and manage the airport centers, and support troops and their families.

Snyder Langston, has come forward to assist in making the new USO center by agreeing to design and build out the space as an in-kind donation. 

The American Legion Women’s Auxiliary Newport Harbor Post 291 will be raising money for the USO by organizing a dinner dance and Silent Auction. The event “SALUTE TO OUR USO” will be at the Radisson Hotel in Newport Beach on January 31st 2015. 

To join in this patriotic mission and for more information on volunteer opportunities, sponsorships or donations to the new USO center, go to image1