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Gov. Whitmer Proclaims September 16 POW/MIA Recognition Day

LANSING, Mich. — Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has recognized September 16, 2022, as POW/MIA Recognition Day to remember and honor the returned U.S. Prisoners of War (POWs) and all Americans still captured, unaccounted for or missing in action (MIA).
“Our commitment to the men and women who served our nation honorably is as strong today as it was when they answered the call to duty,” said Governor Whitmer. “There are tens of thousands of these Americans — including fellow Michiganders — who are still missing. Their families, friends and communities all live with uncertainty regarding their fate, and we must continue to be unrelenting in our pursuit to bring them home. On POW/MIA Recognition Day, I encourage all Michiganders to remember and honor the incredible sacrifices made by these service members on behalf of their state and country.” 
Approximately 1,500 Americans are still missing from the Vietnam War, 7,500 from the Korean War, 72,000 from World War II and 126 from the Cold War, and many of those missing Americans are fellow Michiganders. POW/MIA Recognition Day in Michigan is a testament to the incredible sacrifices these service members made for their country, and the unrelenting efforts to bring these brave Americans home. 
Governor Whitmer encourages every Michigander to take this opportunity to honor all Americans still captured, unaccounted for or MIA as well as returned POWs right here in the Great Lakes State like Smiths Creek native Chris Stone. Previously a Staff Sgt. with the Michigan Army National Guard, Stone was one of three soldiers taken into custody on March 31, 1999 along the Yugoslav-Macedonian border. The soldiers were held in captivity for more than a month until their release on May 2, 1999 after Rev. Jesse Jackson visited with Yugoslavian officials to negotiate their return. Stone has since received a Prisoner of War Medal for his bravery and service. 
“Many of our troops haven’t made it back, I’m one of the lucky ones,” said Stone, who was a POW in Yugoslavia during the Kosovo War. “It was an honor for me to serve the great state of Michigan and our county and I know that we’re doing all we can to bring our POWs and MIAs home.”  
“More than 80,000 Americans are still unaccounted for and we must ensure that the search for those missing will continue,” said U.S. Army Maj. Gen. Paul D. Rogers, adjutant general and director of the Michigan Department of Military and Veterans Affairs. “In support of our POWs and those service members who are still MIA, we encourage Michiganders to fly a POW/MIA flag, attend a remembrance event or exhibit at a local museum or discuss major military battles to keep the memory of POW and MIA troops alive.”   
National POW/MIA Recognition Day is observed on the third Friday in September and is a time to remember the sacrifices of POWs and service members who are MIA. On March 28, 1988, Ronald Reagan signed into law a separate holiday for National Former Prisoner of War Recognition Day which is observed annually on April 9th. 
View the POW/MIA Recognition Day proclamation.

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