SAN DIEGO — The USS Midway Museum will honor and pay tribute to all U.S. military veterans who served during the Vietnam War with a flight-deck commemoration ceremony on March 29 starting at 9 a.m.
This date marks the 50th anniversary of when the last U.S. troops left Vietnam and the final group of American prisoners of war (POWs) were freed. The ceremony will feature several guest speakers who will describe how their heroic, harrowing and heartbreaking experiences during the war changed their lives and the lives of their families forever.
The ceremony’s guest speakers:
- Cmdr. Everett Alvarez, USN (ret.) – A former U.S. Navy pilot who was shot down in 1964 and spent nearly nine years as a prisoner of war.
- Col. Jim Collins, USMC (ret.) – A Marine who fought with a recon battalion and was wounded during combat in 1969.
- Courtney Herrmann – A South Vietnamese woman who escaped Saigon in 1975 as young girl, was evacuated to the USS Midway, and later came to the U.S. with her family as refugees.
- Roy Knight, Jr. – His father, a U.S. Air Force pilot, was shot down and killed in 1967 when Roy was only 11 years old.
A special wreath-laying and ceremonial military flyover will also highlight the ceremony. Attending Vietnam War veterans will also receive a specially designed “challenge coin” honoring their service and sacrifice, as well as a commemorative lapel pin from the Vietnam War Commemoration Office in Washington D.C.
The ceremony is free and open to the public, and all those who attend can remain on Midway after the ceremony to enjoy the museum.
Updates on the ceremony will be posted on Midway’s website.
WATCH RELATED: Honor Flight San Diego | A group of Vietnam Veterans head to our nation's Capitol (Feb. 2023).