The Vietnam Dustoff Association will host its Sept. 21-23 national convention in Dover and will be hosted by Kent County Chapter 850, Vietnam Veterans of America.

The Vietnam Dustoff Association has special meaning to Joe Startt Jr., Chapter 850 president, who will never forget his own life-saving ride after being wounded in Vietnam in 1969.

“I remember being told to hold on, help was on the way. In less than 15 minutes the ‘whop, whop, whop’ was like an angel’s voice telling me I’d survive. The UH-1 Huey on display at the Kent County Veterans Memorial Park serves as an ongoing reminder of their heroism,” Startt said.

Paul Davis, vice president of Chapter 850, worked for two years with the federal government and even the White House to secure the helicopter. That was followed by a road trip caravan to Florida by Joe Startt and other members of the chapter to pick it up with the help of a trucking company sympathetic to veterans.

One of the highlights will be a dinner at 7 p.m. Sept. 22 hosted by the chapter at the Modern Maturity Center, 1121 Forrest Ave., Dover.

The agenda for Sept. 23 includes a 10 a.m. ceremony at the Kent County Veterans Memorial Park, located on South Little Creek Road in Dover, where crew members will be honored, with lunch at the Dover Air Force Base dining facility where the Dustoff crews with be greeted by representatives of the 436th Airlift wing and some of today’s airmen. A tour of the Air Mobility Command Museum will occur after.

The $35 plated dinner will be open to the public on a first-come first-served basis. The reservation cutoff date is Sept. 15.

For tickets, sponsorship opportunities or more, call 697-8384 or email