Never forget our POWs/MIAs

By Mary Martindale


Dear Editor:

This past Sunday commemorated the 15th anniversary of 9/11. Fifteen years since the Twin Towers fell and planes went down in Pennsylvania and the Pentagon. It seems like yesterday. All those people killed. All the first responders killed. We should never, ever, forget the sacrifices made on that day.

Sept. 11 is imprinted in our history. Another day that is remembered in September but isn't well known to most Americans or commemorated is POW/MIA Recognition Day. Well, that is Sept. 16 this year, three days before my brother's, MIA date of Sept. 19, 1966. Yes, 1966. He isn't the only one. There are hundreds that haven't returned from the Vietnam war.

"Never leave a man behind" seems to be the current expression that must be honored. I'm sure most Americans don't realize that there are military search teams in SE Asia waters but are limited by the North Vietnamese government to the amount of time they can search the waters for aircraft, etc. Military remains are being found and returned to the CIL (Center Identifying Lab) in Hawaii for, obviously, identifying.

People vacation in Vietnam but probably don't realize that we are still searching for missing military. If they do know and don't care because it is so long ago or "it's their vacation" then the expression, "Never leave a man behind" is moot. We families would like closure by having our loved ones back on U.S. soil and buried with full military honors in Arlington Cemetery.

Commemorating is remembering with honor and respect to those who gave their lives whether it is within our USA or on foreign ground. We should never forget.

Mary Martindale
Crawford