Lakehurst celebrates 40-year homecoming of Vietnam POWs (James Kula)

In a ceremony hosted by the Navy Lakehurst Historical Society and the JB MDL leadership, 18 former POWs of the Vietnam War were honored for their service and bravery recognizing the passing of forty years since their repatriation in 1973.

Chief Warrant Officer 4 Francis Anton, Maj. Gen. John Borling, Cmdr. George Coker, Col. Kenneth Cordier, Capt. David Drummond, Capt. David Hoffman, Col. James Kula, Lt. Col. Daniel Maslowski, Col. Norman McDaniel, Col. George McKnight, Maj. General Edward Mechenbier, Capt. James Mulligan, Lt. Col. Melvin Pollack, Capt. Paul Schulz, Rear Adm. Robert Shumaker, Maj. Theodore Sienicki, Capt. Wayne Smith and Maj. Samuel Vaughan along with their wives and guests were recognized in Lakehurst’s historic Hangar One during a moving ceremony paying tribute to the service of these heroic American servicemen.

Guest speaker Col. James Hodges, JB MDL commander and a 1991 graduate of the Air Force Academy, spoke reverently of the honor and courage displayed by these heroes whom he learned about as an Academy cadet and whom he hoped to emulate as an officer and leader. Ocean County New Jersey Freeholder Joseph Vicari, a 40-year educator and featured speaker, felt honored to be in the presence of the very men who exemplify the call to duty and sacrifice that make our people and our nation so great.

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