The D-Day Memorial in Bedford is hosting a National POW/MIA Recognition Day ceremony on Friday to honor American service members who became prisoners of war or who are still listed as missing in action. The USA Patriots – formerly known as the Wounded Warrior Amputee Softball Team – will take part in the wreath laying and program. The ceremony will recognize the five most recent Virginians identified by the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency. (They are Raymond Blanton, Ralph Cale, Bobbie Ray Daniels, Henry Ellis, and Andrew Schmitz.) The D-Day Memorial is offering free admission Friday from 10AM – 1PM and the ceremony begins at 1PM.
Monument Terrace, noon: Vietnam Army veteran, David Harker, who spent 3 1/2 years in a POW camp in South Vietnam before having to walk to Hanoi and spend another 2 years before being released in 1973. Also, Jan Reger speaking about her brother, Capt. Alan Robert Trent, U.S. Air Force who was shot down in Cambodia on May 13, 1970 and is still considered MIA.
Here is a history from Steve Bozeman about Lynchburg’s POW marker at Monument Terrace: Back in 2000, local artist Ken Swartz created a POW/MIA Memorial out of a huge slab of greenstone, which we displayed at the “Moving WALL” over Memorial Day Weekend in 2000. It was relocated to the Marine Corps League on Lakeside Dr. for a while until we convinced the City to place it midway up Monument Terrace in 2004. We had a fund raiser at the Moving Wall to pay for it being displayed and we had $4,000 left over, which we (Vietnam Veterans of America Chapter) donated to the City to help with placement.