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Keeping their memories alive: POW MIA memorial coming to Tallahassee

Published: Apr. 14, 2021 at 11:17 PM EDT
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) - According to the American government, more than 81,000 U.S. servicemembers remain missing from World War II, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, the Cold War, the Gulf Wars and other conflicts.

Now, a stunning memorial could be coming to Tallahassee to pay tribute and keep these missing service members’ memories alive.

This comes after what has been a three-year-long effort by the local chapter of Vietnam Veterans of America, VVA Chapter 96.

The memorial is a 7-foot-tall stainless steel replica of the POW MIA bracelet first worn during the Vietnam War as a non-political show of support for missing military members.

VVA Chapter 96 fundraised to get it made and has been fighting to find a place for it since 2019. Wednesday was a big day for the tribute and all those who made the effort to bring it here.

“It’s been along haul, and we’re delighted that the Legislature has seen fit to place this bracelet here where it belongs with the Vietnam Memorial,” said VVA Chapter 96 President, Joe West.

The state legislature unanimously approved to have it placed across from the Capitol Building. It’s an appropriate spot given that the Vietnam Memorial there dons 54 names of Florida soldiers missing in action and the names of the Vietnam vets who created it.

The bill to allow it to be placed on state property still needs to be signed by Governor Ron DeSantis, but given that he’s a veteran himself, it’s a safe bet he will do it.

The hope is to have it installed by National POW/MIA Recognition Day in September.

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