Escaped Vietnam POW, lifelong Akron resident Bruce Graening dies at 67

Almost 50 years after escaping his Viet Cong captors, a lifelong Akron resident has passed away.

Bruce Graening was born on July 30, 1946, and lived his 67 years in Kenmore. After graduating from Kenmore High School, he was drafted to serve in the United States Army or, as he often told friends and family, “Uncle Sam had called him to service.”

According to Veteran­Tributes.org, he attended basic training from April to June 1966 at Fort Benning, Ga., before completing Infantry Indirect Fire Crewman training at Fort Polk, La.

He was then deployed to South Vietnam, where he served as an indirect fire crewman with Company D, 5th Battalion, 7th Cavalry Regiment of the 1st Cavalry Division from October 1966 to May 1967. During that time, Private First Class Graening was captured by Viet Cong forces and taken as a prisoner of war.

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