Each year, POW/MIA Recognition Day is held the third Friday in September. Throughout the U.S., and on U.S. bases and ships not in the country, Americans remember those who are prisoners of war or missing in action. You can get involved by attending a POW/MIA ceremony in your area. Ceremonies are held at many veterans’ facilities, schools and national cemeteries, as well as state and national offices. Each year, a ceremony also takes place at the Pentagon.
History Of POW/MIA Recognition Day
POW/MIA Recognition Day was established in 1998 as an Act of Congress. Although the POW/MIA flag had been around since 1990, this authorization established when and how the flag should be flown. Under the act, the POW/MIA flag must be smaller than the U.S. flag and it is generally flown below or next to the American Flag. Congress also mandated that the POW/MIA flag be flown on Armed Forces Day, Memorial Day, Flag Day, Independence Day and Veterans Day.
Organizations stress the importance of honoring and recognizing prisoners of war and those missing in action, rather than memorializing these individuals. This helps keep the commitment strong when it comes to finding and bringing home those that are missing.
Accounting For The Missing
The U.S. has always maintained careful records of how many military members have gone missing or been taken as POWs in every foreign conflict. As of Sept. 2017, there are 82,473 military personnel unaccounted for. This includes more than 73,000 from WWII alone, most of whom went missing in the Asian Pacific region or Europe. Location and identification efforts are ongoing, and more missing soldiers are found or identified every month.
Make A Difference For Veterans
POW/MIA Recognition Day is one of the most important military holidays in the U.S. The families of missing soldiers, from recent and past conflicts, want answers about where their loved ones are. A day like today helps keep our collective attention on finding answers for these families and keeping the search alive. There are many POW/MIA organizations in the U.S., and national organizations such as the American Legion and the VFW also support the efforts to account for America’s missing. Getting involved with one of these organizations can make a difference.
You can also make a difference for our nation’s veterans and their families. Many veterans who return home need help with the transition and finding resources to live a better life. You can help support these veterans by donating your car to Vehicles For Veterans. Proceeds from your donation go towards helping veterans organizations throughout the U.S. Donate your car today by calling 1-855-811-4838 or filling out an online car donation form.