Meadville Tribune

Local News

September 17, 2013

Special events set to remember POW/MIA

MEADVILLE — A series of special local events are set for Friday and Saturday to honor and remember those who were prisoners of war and those servicemen and women still missing in action from all wars.

On Friday, a 24-hour POW-MIA Vigil starts at 6 p.m. with the Posting of Colors in front of the Crawford County Courthouse in Meadville. At 8, Sgt. Joshua Davis will speak. Davis was a part of the forensic team that collected remains from North Korea in 1991 that scientists eventually determined included those of Sgt. Chester Williams of Conneaut Lake. Davis escorted Williams’ remains back to Crawford County last year for burial.

In addition, names of all the military personnel from Pennsylvania still listed as MIA from the Vietnam War will be read and a candle will be lit for each as tribute to their continued sacrifice and as an honorarium to their families.

This is the 25th anniversary of the vigil, which is organized by Veterans of the Vietnam War Inc. Jack Greer Memorial Post 52 and the Veterans Welcome Home Association of Meadville. This is also the 15th anniversary of the Ride for Freedom from the Fairway 12 Motel, Restaurant and Lounge in Conneaut Lake to the courthouse.

The open-to-the-public ride begins at 3 p.m. Saturday at the Fairway 12, Route 618, with free registration beginning at noon. Motorcycles and classic cars will have a police escort as they head south on Route 618, onto Route 322 and through Conneaut Lake into Meadville. The route in Meadville has changed this year due to the North Street reconstruction project. The Ride’s motorcycles and classic cars will turn from Park Avenue onto Chestnut and then into Diamond Park at the courthouse.

There will be a ceremony at Diamond Park after the arrival of all vehicles, including a speech by Sgt. Davis. Riders will have the opportunity to purchase T-shirts and pins to commemorate this event at the staging area at Fairway 12.

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