GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) – Remembering the men and women who have served our country should be an everyday thing, but Friday night it was about remembering those who never made it home at the POW/MIA Recognition Day event.
No matter which branch of U.S. Military you served in, there seems to be an unwritten rule everyone follows — to never leave a man behind.
“All these veterans that are out here are here to remember their buddies,” said Ken Juza, president of the Vietnam Veterans of America, Chapter 224 in Green Bay.
“My mother’s father was killed in WWII and was lost at sea in 1942. And I have not forgotten that,” said Navy veteran K.C. Johnson, Disabled American Veterans- Chapter Three.
That pledge is what brings dozens of veterans and community members to the Brown County Courthouse Friday night.
“In 1979, it was nationally recognized that the third Friday in September should always be recognized to commemorate POW and MIA’s,” said Juza.
Twenty-seven candles shine bright in honor of the 27 Wisconsinites who are still missing in action.
One of the flames will be retired because the remains of a soldier, who was missing since 1970, have recently been found.
“He was a major in the army and he was a passenger on a helicopter that crashed and died at the scene,” said Juza.
But the other candles will remain bright, a flickering flame of hope that one day soon all of the POW’s and MIA’s will soon return home.
“Veterans never forget. We don’t carry it just one day. We carry it all year-long, every day,” said Johnson.