The Citadel honored all prisoners of war and those missing in action by raising a POW/MIA flag on
September 16, POW/MIA Recognition day. The flag now flies on the northwest end of
Summerall Field to remind everyone of the sacrifice that prisoners of war and those missing in
action have endured while fighting for our country.
There are 10 known living alumni who were prisoners of war
World War II,
the Korean War,
and the Vietnam War.
The six who were able to come to campus were special guests for the day.
are lessons in courage and valor.
They shared their experiences with cadets
during a panel discussion and later with alumni at a larger gathering.
Col. Quincy Collins, USAF (Ret.), '53, who spent more than seven years in captivity
during the Vietnam War, gave the keynote address during the evening program. He spoke
of the principles of teamwork, commitment and loyalty that kept him and others
going during those years of imprisonment and isolation.
He closed with his recitation of "I Am Old Glory" (video to right) – a piece that reflects the
inspiration he gains from the American flag, one of the most significant
symbols for him during those years in captivity.
(Click here for the words to this recitation.)
The Citadel Chorale closed the program with a performance of The POW Hymn (audio below)
that Collins composed while in prison.
The Citadel Class of 1964 sponsored the event. Former Air Force pilot
Ted Curtis, '64, helped spearhead the project out of a wish to remind
the Corps of Cadets of their heritage.
"Those alumni who were prisoners of war are shining examples of the
leadership and sacrifices that duty may require," Curtis said.
"Bringing these former POWs to campus gives cadets a powerful
connection to their heritage and to the traditions that have
made The Citadel great."
The black POW/MIA flag was developed by the National League of
POW/MIA Families. It serves as a reminder of those who were
held in enemy captivity as well as the more than
1800 Americans who are still unaccounted for.
The Class of 1964 has funded the flagpole and plaque bearing the inscription:
This flag flies every day and night
as a tribute to those great Americans
who are Prisoners of War or Missing in Action
and to remind each member of the
South Carolina Corps Of Cadets
of the sacrifices made by Citadel alumni
as well as all American servicemen and women
in the cause of freedom.
Known living Citadel alumni who were prisoners of war include:
World War II
James Jackson Monoghan '43
Richard H. Kellahan '44
William D. Warthen '44
Alumni and friends will converge on campus beginning Friday for Homecoming 2005.
Festivities run all day Friday and Saturday, culminating with the
Citadel vs. Elon football game at Johnson Hagood Stadium.
for the Homecoming 2005 schedule of events.