VIDEO: Indy Remembers MIAs
Annual ceremony reminds people to not forgot those who didn't come home from war
(WIBC.com photo: Ray Steele)
The third week every September, the Indiana War Memorial hosts a remembrance for a dwindling but not forgotten group: those missing from America's wars.
Listen to Ray Steele's report:
The annual POW/MIA remembrance ceremony is generally the same every year - wreaths are laid, torches are lit and the bell of the USS Indianapolis is tolled for those who never came home and are still unaccounted for. But as the keynote speaker, Fishers native and Air National Guard Brigadier General Worthe Holt, pointed out, there have been no service members who have been missing in action long term over the last 20 years. Holt says he worries that younger people will forget about those who are still missing from Vietnam and previous wars.
James Koutz, the national commander of the American Legion, says such worries are personal for him. A close friend, one Koutz wouldn't name, disappeared while the two served together in Vietnam more than 40 years ago. Koutz says he hasn't taken off his POW/MIA bracelet since 1971 and won't remove it until he finds out what happened to his friend. Koutz is among a group that's scheduled to visit Vietnam and Laos next year to search for more remains of soldiers who never came home.
The ceremony to honor POW's and MIA's from the nation's wars at the Indiana War Memorial