'Until They Come Home'

  • Published
  • By Brian Shreve
  • Robins Public Affairs
Though many of us may never fully understand what they endured, Team Robins and the local community will have a chance to formally honor America's prisoners of war and those missing in action.

The Robins POW/MIA organization's annual recognition ceremony will be Thursday at 3 p.m. in the Museum of Aviation's Hangar One in observance of the national day of remembrance the following Friday.

A vigil run kicks off the event at 3 p.m. Wednesday, with the goal of keeping a baton moving the entire 24 hours leading into the ceremony, said Senior Master Sgt. Shawn Page, organization chairman.

"This is a real team-building event in honor of National POW/MIA Recognition Day," he said. "With the vigil run, we hope to boost camaraderie within the units and connect people across the base. They can sign up to come out and walk or run in a group or as individuals."

The ceremony's guest speaker will be retired Lt. Gen. Claude Kicklighter, the USA/Vietnam War Commemorative Partner Program director.

Base and civic leaders, former POWs and their families are also expected to attend, as well as representatives from the National League of POW/MIA Families - a group formed in the late '60s which was instrumental in launching the national recognition day, observed on the third Friday of September each year.

Page said last year's ceremony was a success that drew more than 300 attendees, and that this year promises to be even better.

"We're trying to put more emphasis on this because these people should never be forgotten," he said. "A lot of the same committee members are back working on this, and they all do an outstanding job putting this together. It's a very important event, and until all of these veterans come home, every American who cherishes freedom should come out and honor them."

Those interested in signing up for the vigil run may contact Master Sgt. Margaret-Mary Aleman at For more information on the ceremony, contact Senior Master Sgt. Shawn Page at