On Friday, Nov. 1, 2019, Mahoning Valley Squadron 15 dedicated a POW/MIA Chair of Honor at Poland Seminary High School Dave Pavlansky Field prior to the Poland Bulldogs vs. Struthers Wildcats football game. The Chair of Honor was donated by the Detachment of Ohio.
On hand for the dedication was Department of Ohio Commander Roger Friend, who was honored by the referees by asking him to meet the captains from both teams and to toss the coin prior to the game.
Members from various Squadrons and Posts from across the state came to participate in the dedication, where the entire stadium stood silent as the colors were presented, rifle salute, Taps played by Poland Bulldog Marching Band Trumpeters, and the National Anthem as the United States Flag and a new POW/MIA flag raised. Players from both teams wore a POW/MIA sticker on their helmets, provided by Squadron 15.
Since World War II, over 82,000 American military service members are unaccounted for from service in our major wars and conflicts. They may be still lying on the battlefield, or they may be in the hands of our enemies. We don’t know, they are unaccounted for. Their remains have not been recovered; their whereabouts are unknown. These American heroes are Prisoners of War (POW) or Missing in Action (MIA).
Sons of The American Legion Mahoning Valley Squadron 15 and the Detachment of Ohio remain steadfast and will never rest in their commitment to the goal of achieving the fullest possible accounting for all U.S. military personnel and designated civilian personnel missing and unaccounted for who served during these wars and conflicts. The dedication of a POW/MIA Chair of Honor is to remember these military heroes who have not returned.
The Chair of Honor is dedicated as a solemn reminder of our obligation to always remember the sacrifices made to defend our nation by those brave men and women in the service of our country. The Chair of Honor is to remain perpetually empty to help people remember that even though our soldiers, sailors, and airmen are not here, there is still a space for them. This single black chair brings awareness to our nation’s leaders to bring home our Prisoners of War and those Missing In Action and that they have not been forgotten. Sons of The American Legion want to make others aware of Prisoners of War and Missing in Action and of the loss and pain suffered by their respective family members. Sons of The American Legion Mahoning Valley Squadron 15