Donnie Edwards, a two-time second-team All-Pro and a 2002 Pro Bowl selection who played 13 seasons with the
NFL’s Kansas City Chiefs and San Diego Chargers, and his Best Defense Foundation, will touch down in Honolulu
today with 65 World War II veterans. They are returning to Hawaii to commemorate the 80 th anniversary of the Dec.
7, 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor that killed thousands of U.S. sailors and thrust the United States into the middle of the
second world war.
“It is an incredible honor to arrive here today with our most celebrated war heroes, especially when there are so few
left,” explained Edwards. “It’s hard to believe 80 years have passed since that fateful day when Pearl Harbor was so
senselessly attacked, but we’re forever grateful to these heroic men and women who so selflessly gave everything
they had to defend our American freedom.”
American Airlines donated the use of a chartered plane to ferry the WWII veterans, along with chaperones and family
members, to Honolulu from Dallas, where ceremonies were also held this week.
Besides taking part in a parade and commemoration ceremony on Dec. 7 at Pearl Harbor, the group will make a
number of additional appearances at commemoration sites and military instillations throughout Honolulu. They
include Schofield Barracks, Wheeler Army Airfield, Joint Base Pearl Harbor Hickam, Ford Island, the USS Arizona
Memorial, the Battleship Missouri Memorial & Pearl Harbor Aviation Museum, Marine Corps Base Hawaii and the
National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific.
Media interested in attending and covering events or scheduling interviews with the WWII veterans can do so by
contacting Amanda Thompson of the Best Defense Foundation via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Founded by Edwards and re-established in 2018 as a 501c3 nonprofit foundation, the Best Defense Foundation’s
mission is to help military veterans and their families. Its efforts are funded exclusively through sponsorships, private
donations, fundraising events and Edwards’ own personal philanthropy and generosity.
A cornerstone of the Foundation is a commitment to bring WWII Veterans back to foreign battlefields to help them
find closure and camaraderie with their brothers in arms and celebrate their acts of heroism and sacrifice all those
years ago. In years past, the Foundation traveled WWII veterans to some of the world’s most well-known former
battle sites and nations, including Iwo Jima, Battle of the Bulge, the Eagle’s Nest, Guam, Tinian and Saipan, Normandy,
France, Holland, the Netherlands and Germany.
Edwards was the recipient of the NFL’s prestigious Salute to Service Award in 2020 for his commitment to America’s
WWII veterans. During his playing career, Edwards participated in 10 USO Tours and in 2003 he was part of a special
delegation invited aboard the aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln when President George Bush delivered his famous
Mission Accomplished speech signifying an end to major combat operations in Iraq.
Additional sponsors and partners for this week’s visit to Honolulu to commemorate the 80 th anniversary of Pearl
Harbor include the Gary Sinise Foundation, Sig Sauer, Veterans United, Born Primitive, Rick Ware Racing, Nine Line
Apparel, Maui Brewing and Chula Vista Brewery.