The primary mission of the POW*MIA Awareness Rally Association in Pocatello is to heighten awareness of the POW/MIA issue, and to hold our government responsible for the fullest possible accounting of all who wear our nation’s uniform. Members of our association are active year-round to make sure we are doing all we can to fulfill our mission.
In February, twelve members attended 11th Annual Elko Chili Feed hosted by the POW*MIA Elko Awareness Association. Approximately 500 people attended the event including members of our sister associations from Boise Valley and Magic Valley in Idaho and Layton, Utah. The featured speaker was Ann Mills Griffiths from the National League of POW/MIA Families located in Washington D.C. The event raised $10,000 for the League.
On April 1st members of our Pocatello, Boise, Idaho; Elko, Nevada; Layton, Utah and Helena, Montana attended our 3rd Annual POW/MIA Summit hosted by the Magic Valley POW/MIA Awareness Association in Twin Falls. Workshops to discuss and learn more about the current status and challenges relating to the POW/MIA issue were conducted by Mark Stephensen of the National League of POW/MIA Families. A banquet/fundraiser was held that evening at The Turf Club. Proceeds from that event will also benefit the National League of POW/MIA Families.
The end of April marked the 12th Annual Sweet/Ola Run, organized & run by the Boise Valley POW/MIA Corporation. to support, an annual event, that also raises money for the National League of POW/MIA Families.
The 48th Annual Meeting for the National League of POW/MIA Families is being held in Arlington, VA June 20-24, 2017. This annual event is an opportunity for family members of Unreturned Veterans to hear directly from Government Officials on what actions are currently taking place to locate their loved ones and bring them home. Each year the various POW*MIA Associations from the intermountain west send delegates to serve on the Sergeant of Arms team that assists the League with the meeting. It also gives us an opportunity to learn more about the issue first hand and bring that information back home. The delegates from our association this year are Walt Johnson, a Vietnam Veteran and Jason Johansen, an Iraq Veteran and current member of the 660th Ordinance Company here in Pocatello. Both are long time active members of our association.
The National League of POW/MIA Families is a watchdog organization that has been in existence since 1970. Voting membership is comprised of wives, children, parents, siblings and other relatives of Americans who were or are still listed as Prisoners or War (POW), Missing in Action (MIA), Killed in Action/Body Not Recovered (KIA/BNR) and/or returned American Vietnam War POW’s. The League’s sole mission is to obtain the release of all prisoners, the fullest possible accounting for the missing and repatriation of all recoverable remains of those who died serving our nation during the Vietnam War. More information on The League can be found at www.pow-miafamilies.org.
We still have many events planned for the rest of the year including the 17th Annual POW*MIA Awareness Rally and Motorcycle Rodeo that will be held in Idaho Falls at Sandy Downs July 28 & 29, 2017. We welcome all Veterans and patriotic Americans to join us as we continue to work towards fulfilling our mission. For more information on our association or our upcoming events please go to www.powmiarodeo.org.