View Full Version : Volunteers remember POW, MIA soldiers

09-18-09, 08:25 AM
Volunteers remember POW, MIA soldiers
written by: Randy Barber Date last updated: 9/18/2009 7:34:58 AM

DENVER - The 80,000 American soldiers, marines, sailors, and airmen who are still missing in action or are prisoners of war have never been forgotten, but for 24 hours in Denver they will be top of mind.

Volunteers with the Air Reserve Personnel Center in Lowry are holding a vigil to remember those U.S. servicemen and women who have never come home.

For a 24 hour period, volunteers are reading the names of more than 10,000 people who are still listed as POW/MIA from the Cold War era to the present. Volunteers are switching out every half-hour.

One of the volunteers, Master Sergeant Laramie Reece, said most of the remainder of the soldiers still unaccounted for disappeared during World War II.

The vigil is expected to end at 2 p.m. Friday with a formal flag folding ceremony.

The public is welcome to join the remembrance which is at the Air Reserve Personnel Center at 6760 E. Irvington Place, in Denver.


09-18-09, 08:49 AM
Country pays tribute to POW/MIAs today

By Debra Glidden / The Daily Item
Today is the third Friday in September and if you are observant you will notice a black POW/MIA flag flying over federal facilities and cemeteries, post offices and military installations.

It is the national POW/MIA Recognition Day, a day to honor the commitments and the sacrifices made by prisoners of war and those who are still missing in action.

Today is one of only six days specified by law on which the black POW/MIA flag must be flown over federal facilities and cemeteries, post offices and military installations.

Swampscott VFW Commander John Sacherski, who served in Vietnam as a member of the United States Marines, urged everyone to take a moment to reflect today.

"We should never ever forget," he said. "We should always remember them and continue hoping by some miracle we will be able to bring them all home one way or another. If they are not alive and we can even find their remains that would bring some closure to the families."

Sacherski said he attended a moving tribute to POW/MIA's in New Hampshire last year and he hopes the VFW Post in Swampscott could
arrange a similar tribute next year. "The names of all those who
haven't been brought home were read out loud," he said. "As each name was read a balloon was released into the air. It was very emotional and a fitting way to remember."

Vietnam Veterans of America Chapter 908 Treasurer Arthur Salkins, who is a disabled Vietnam veteran and Lynn resident, pointed out there are still 1,700 members of the military unaccounted for from the Vietnam War alone.

"The whole purpose of this day is to let the families and friends of our POWs and MIAs know that we still care," he said. "We want to let the families know we have not forgotten their loved ones."

Lynn Director of Veterans Services Agent Mike Sweeney said the
POW/MIA flag is flown every day at City Hall and in City Hall Square.
"We hope people will take a moment out and remember," he said. "It's an important day to pause and remember. A lot of families have not had the opportunity to bring their loved ones home and that is heartbreaking. We're going to keep the faith until there is a full accounting of everybody. When the Wall that Heals was in Lynn we had a day of remembrance for those who are POW and MIA so we're hoping a lot of people are aware of it this year."

Salkins added he would like to see a greater awareness of POW/MIA Recognition Day.

"This day has a lot of meaning to the families of people who haven't come home," he said. "I would like to see this day recognized locally every year. More people need to be aware of the significance of this day."