In many cases, they have grandchildren or even great-grandchildren they never met, but a local veterans group hopes never to let their names be forgotten.
Weather permitting, the Veterans Park of America will host a live reading of all 38 names of North Carolina’s remaining POW/MIAs Friday evening at 6:30 p.m. Friday at the park.
The annual event is a tradition here, and honors all those whose families still don’t know what happened to their soldiers, sailors, Marines and airmen who served in combat.
The event was moved to the park in part to better enable social distancing.
The park’s Field of Flags display will be up for the weekend, honoring not just the POW/MIAs but all servicemen and -women from all eras. Park volunteer Angela Norris said National POW/MIA Day is often forgotten.
The event is usually held at the old Courthouse in Whiteville, and features a table with an empty chair and symbolic elements of POW/MIAs.
Norris said that if the remnants of Hurricane Sally persist, the event will be rescheduled.
For more information, call 840.3048.
Among North Carolina’s known Prisoners of War and Missing in Action servicemen are:
Andrew Johnson Craven, U.S. Army, Wilmington
Frederick Lewis Cristman, U.S. Army, Salisbury
Robert Lee Curlee Jr., U.S. Army, Monroe
Harold Lee Harris, U.S. Army, Durham
Luther Harris Howard, U.S. Army, Hamlet
Larry C. Jamerson, U.S. Army, Rosman
William D. Johnson, U.S. Army, Rocky Mount
Charlie Gray Lewis, U.S. Army, Fayetteville
James M. Luttrell, U.S. Army, Fayetteville
Jerry L. Moore, U.S. Army, Cleveland
Larry K. Morrow, U.S. Army, Lowell
Dennis William Omelia, U.S. Army, Smithfield
Robert Milton Staton Jr., U.S. Army, Jamesville
Jimmy L.Watson, U.S. Army, Lucama
Melvin Lee Weaks, U.S. Army, Concord
Robert Douglas Avery, U.S. Marines, Morganton
Joseph N. Hargrove, U.S. Marines, Mount Olive
Wayne V. Wilson, U.S. Marines, Thomasville
Harry John Belknap, U.S. Marines, Jonas Ridge
Eric Parker Brice, U.S. Navy, Rocky Mount
Edward Dean Brown Jr., U.S. Navy, Charlotte
Franklin Harlee Canup, Jr. U.S. Navy, Concord
Paul Edwin Gore, U.S. Navy, Faison
Litchfield Patterson Huie, U.S. Navy, Warsaw
Larry Gene Lewis, U.S. Navy, Asheville
Walter Sutton Wood, U.S. Navy, Fort Bragg
Murray Lyman Borden, U.S. Air Force, Goldsboro
Fred Lee Clarke, U.S. Air Force, Troutman
Glenn Richard Cook, U.S. Air Force, Charlotte
John Hunter Crews II, U.S. Air Force, Asheville
Robin F. Gatwood Jr., U.S. Air Force, Hickory
Connie Mack Gravitte, U.S. Air Force, Ca-Vel
Fredrick M. Hall, U.S. Air Force, Waynesville
Carter A. Howell, U.S. Air Force, Fayetteville
John Lewis McDaniel, U.S. Air Force, Gibsonville
Edwin D. Palmgren, U.S. Air Force, Winston-Salem
William Carl Sutton, U.S. Air Force, Goldsboro
Phillip Rogerson Wellons, U.S. Air Force, Raleigh