POW/MIA Recognition Day

POW/MIA Recognition Day is a commemorated on the third Friday of every September, a date that’s not associated with any particular war. Resolutions making it official were passed in 1979 by Congress and the President after families of more that 2,500 Vietnam War POW/MIAs pushed for full accountability. The point of POW/MIA Recognition Day is to ensure that America remembers and shows that it stands behind those who serve, and to make sure the nation does every thing it can to account for those who have never returned. The remains of almost 82,000 Americans are still missing, according to the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency.

VFW Salutes Medal of Honor Recipient

Army pilot Capt. Larry Taylor was awarded the Medal of Honor by President Joe Biden in recognition of his heroic actions to save his fellow brothers-in-arms during the Vietnam War. With little regard for his own safety, Taylor flew into enemy fire to rescue four reconnaissance team members from almost certain death. VFW Washington Office Executive Director Ryan Gallucci attended the White House ceremony to honor Taylor.

Op-Ed Says Don’t Ground Veteran Pilots

A Washington Post op-ed penned by VFW Washington Office Executive Director Ryan Gallucci explains that using VA benefits or seeking physical or mental health care should not be an automatic disqualifier for pilots. This is especially true considering the industry is woefully understaffed and looking to the veterans’ community to help solve the problem. Gallucci wrote that the VFW “respects the difficult jobs our pilots do every single day and believes that the FAA has a duty to ensure the safety of millions of Americans who travel every year. If people are outright lying, they deserve scrutiny — but this is a bold accusation that does not align with how the VFW reads this [FAA] report.”

POW/MIA Update

Army Sgt. Willie J. Baty, 20, of Mexia, Texas, was a member of L Company, 3rd Battalion, 24th Infantry Regiment. The Army issued a presumptive finding of death on Dec. 31, 1953. He will be buried in Dallas, Texas, on Sept. 15, 2023.

Army Pvt. Daniel Moniz, 19, of Hayward, California, was assigned to Medical Detachment, 12th Infantry Regiment. He was killed in action on Nov. 11, 1944. He will be buried in his hometown on Sept. 29, 2023.

Army Pvt. 1st Class Thomas F. Brooks, 23, of Mammoth Cave, Kentucky, was a member of Company D, 194th Tank Battalion. He was captured on April 9, 1942, and died as a prisoner of war on Dec. 10, 1942. He will be buried in his hometown on Oct. 1, 2023.

Army Air Forces 1st Lt. Edward T. McGuire, 22, of Chicago, Illinois, served with the 415th Bombardment Squadron. He went missing in action on Aug. 1, 1943. He will be buried on Oct. 28, 2023, in Alsip, Illinois.

Air Forces 2nd Lt. Edward Barnett, 24, of Chicago, Illinois, served with the 66th Bombardment Squadron. He went missing on Aug. 1, 1943. He will be buried at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Virginia, on a date to be determined.

Army Air Forces Sergeant Irving R. Newman, 22, of Los Angeles, California, was assigned to the 343d Bombardment Squadron. He went missing in action on May 6, 1943. Interment services are pending.

Army Air Forces 2nd Lt. Fred L. Brewer, Jr., 23, of Charlotte, North Carolina, was assigned to the 100th Fighter Squadron, 332nd Fighter Group. He went missing in action on Oct. 19, 1944. Contact the Army Casualty Office for funeral information.

Till next week, praying for all service members.


– Charles Castelluccio