The Carrick branch of the RAF Association has launched the 2015 Wings Appeal with the help of Lord Lieutenant for Co Antrim, Joan Christie.
The event took place in the town last Friday afternoon and this year coincides with a significant milestone - the 75th anniversary of the Battle of Britain.
It deserves our wholehearted support in this special anniversary yearJoan Christie
Over the decades the RAF Association has played an important part in providing welfare support and relief for a large number of veterans who served in the RAF, said Wings Appeal Organiser, Wing Commander Noel Williams.
“Each year it responds to over 23,000 calls for help and the number is steadily rising as those who are eligible become older,” he added. “Indeed, well over half of those who qualify for help are now aged over 90 with many in their late 90s.”
Branch chairman, Colin Murphy added: “The World War II generation fought for the freedom we enjoy today, so the RAF Association is asking residents from across south Antrim and beyond to help those who gave a huge portion of their yesterday so that we could have a secure tomorrow.”
The Carrick branch also covers Islandmagee, through Whitehead to Ballycarry, Ballyclare, Greenisland, Monkstown, Glengormley and Newtownabbey. Last year it raised £35,000 - more than any other branch in the UK.
“I am tremendously proud of the welfare work which the Carrickfergus branch has achieved over the past years, but it all costs a great deal of money,” Mrs Christie said. “The cost of maintaining its welfare facilities and meeting some of the needs of our RAF veterans is considerable and deserves our wholehearted support in this special anniversary year.”