MISSING IN AMERICA PROJECT February 2008 Inside this issue: A WORD OR TWO FROM FRED steer them too. I hope we can get more volun- teers to start up their efforts for MIAP. From Chaplain 2 Chuck Be extremely cautious of what we say! Possible Alliance 2 Abandoned, forgotten, lost, unclaimed with 9-11 Families must be explained to define that it is the last known person responsible for the cremation Redding MIAP Ser- 2 order, that has left these veterans on the vice Fred, Chaplain Chuck and Cheryl at the shelves. It is simply our efforts to encourage American Legion Convention in August that the information is provided to the Veter- 2007 ans Administration with or without our assis- Miscellaneous from 3 Cheryl tance and allow these veterans to be verified. The mission of MIAP is to honor our veterans The Veterans Administration cannot process Great Television 3 Coverage and assure that they receive the military hon- or help anyone that has not been sent to them ors due them. It is not to place blame or to to verify. I have yet to hear of any case where judge why it has not happened sooner. a veteran has been refused his honors. The VA Cemetery System has supported us and Thanks to all of you who are assisting in this eased our verification process immensely. We enormous effort to honor our fellow veterans. look forward to more help and assistance. Very special thanks to the American Legion, This effort is towards one goal, and not to the VA National and State Cemetery Systems blame, it is simply for the veteran. and all funeral homes and agencies that help us. Without all of this support we would have IT IS THE RIGHT THING TO DO! sounded taps on this effort. I have been contacted by over 15 television stations and some very major magazines for stories. All want local contacts to interview and report on their success or failures. For most of these stations, there was no one to AFTER ACTION REPORT FROM MISSOURI (if I do say so myself). I was did. Congressman If you have not heard by so proud of all of the Missouri Carnahan's aid wanted to now, the ceremony put on by volunteers. make sure we had made time our Missouri MIAP Coordina- for him to speak and we were tor, Linda Smith, was a re- When I arrived at the chapel, able to accommodate sounding success. there were several people him. Acoustics in the chapel already present. The active were checked and I was in- In Linda’s own words: duty soldiers wanted to do a formed that I did not need a quick run through of their part microphone (lol). The bag- “The ceremony was beautiful of the ceremony, which we pipe and drum corps from the Page 2 Missing in America Newsletter FROM CHAPLAIN CHUCK As 2008 starts off with a ginia State Chaplain, Rev- identify and lay to rest. I bang, so does the Missing erend Alaina Wharton Ad- would also like to thank the In America Project. We ams (Rev. Al) as Colorado Patriot Guard Riders for have been able to deliver State Chaplain, and 1st LT their participation in the eleven cremated veterans Kenneth Conklin as Missouri service and escort to the remains to their final rest- State Chaplain. Chaplain cemetery. In all, we had ing place in the month of Conklin has been doing approximately 26 motor- January. Six received hon- many services at Jefferson cycles and four vehicles in ors at Jefferson Barracks in Barracks and conducted the motorcade. This ser- Missouri on January 11th the MIAP service there on vice at Igo marks the sec- and five received honors January 11 of this year. ond such service conducted on January 23rd at Igo Vet- by MIAP for cremated re- erans’ Cemetery in North- For the services in Igo, I mains. There is also a ser- ern California. would like to thank the vice scheduled on April 12 California Highway Patrol at Dixon National Ceme- We have also added three for sending two of their tery for more cremains that new State Chaplains to our officers to accept the flag have been identified here roster. I would like to wel- for one of their retired offi- in Northern California. come Larry Provost as Vir- cers that we were able to POSSIBLE ALLIANCE WITH 9-11 FAMILIES Fred has been in touch with The 911 friends and we all are aware of a representative of the fami- relatives have a lies of those who perished souls that are lost on 9-11. We are hopeful strong tie with the and waiting to be members of this special Missing In America group will come on board Project--we all are found and put to an with MIAP. Our MIAP Es- aware of souls that honorable rest cort Team member Bud Lingii shared with us why he are lost and waiting felt this alliance would fit to be found and put to within the MIAP mission an honorable rest... statement. REDDING MIAP SERVICE The Redding, CA contingent held a ceremony for five veterans cremains, located through the efforts of Rick Proietti, on January 23. The incompara- ble Bud Lingii, MIAP Escort Team member and wordsmith, sums up why we do what we do. One line in this message really hit home to me, “...we were the mourners and that none of the deceased warriors had family, by blood or oath, in attendance.” We are, indeed, the adopted family of every forgotten and unclaimed vet- eran. We are the family that will ensure these heroes are properly laid to rest with the honor and respect they deserve. Without us, the MIAP mem- bers, they will forever be alone and forsaken by America. Missing in America Newsletter Page 3 MISCELLANEOUS FROM CHERYL Happy New Year!!! Well, I did start this at the beginning of the year! So much has happened since 1//1/08 that we had to hold off sending this out. Fred pontificates that 2008 is going to be a good year for MIAP. I certainly hope so!! We are getting a lot of media attention from around the nation. I’ll let Fred fill you in on who he’s been dealing with. This is great news as the more we get our name out, the more successful we will be in fulfilling our mission. We are in desperate need of volunteers, chaplains and cash donations. Fred continues to dip into his limited funds to keep MIAP afloat. We have mailing costs, database charges, server fees, fees to bury veterans—the whole gamut of expenses to keep an organization running. We are in need of grant writers or anyone willing to try and apply for cash grants. If anyone has anything they would like published in the newsletter, please let me know. Photos, as well!!! Send to firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you for all you do for MIAP. Cheryl Great Television Coverage Last night a great feature was aired in Missouri. As Fred said in his e-mail: “Thanks again to the whole Missouri MIAP team.” http://www.ksdk.com/video/default.aspx?aid=67740&sid=138863&bw=hi&cat=70 Continued from Page 1, After Action Report from Missouri St. Louis Fire Department wanted to know where they needed to be and when to play. Everyone who participated was briefed. The ceremony began with introductions with special thanks to Mr. Polydys, Gerber Chapel Funeral Director. Of course, thanks were given to all of the VIPs. The veterans names were announced and brief military history given for each. They were then brought forward individually by the pallbearers as all veteran and active duty saluted. The bagpiper corps played "Amazing Grace" in the background as all of this occurred. After the last veteran was placed on the table, Chaplain Conklin led the Chapel in prayer. He did an outstanding job. Best prayer for a veterans funeral I have ever heard. (This opinion was confirmed by many after the ceremony). The presentations were made next with Joe Smith presenting a beautiful crystal plaque (made by the Veterans Commission) on behalf of the Missing in America Project to Mr. Polydys and Gerber Chapel. Joe was also asked to present the PGR/MIAP plaque/flag/name plates in the shadow box to Mr. Polydys on behalf of the six veter- ans. Next came the guest speakers, Mr. Otto, Executive Director of the Missouri Funeral Directors Association, Congressman Carnahan spoke next and lastly Maj Gen King Sidwell, Missouri Adjacent General spoke. Maj Gen Sidwell was so moved during his talk that his voice choked up several times as he tearfully read a poem and talked about the American Veteran and Active Duty. Next came the 21 gun salute and taps. The ceremony ended with passing in review with MG Sidwell saluting each urn as he passed. The urns were also saluted by other veterans and active duty alike. After the ceremony, I was so pleased that almost everyone in attendance came up and told me what a beautiful, dignified and touching ceremony it was. Everyone was impressed. These American Heroes were laid to rest before sunset in Jefferson Barracks' beautiful cemetery. Linda Smith Missouri MIAP Coordinator To view the photos: http://s15.photobucket.com/albums/a388/ducpho/MIAP Continued from Page 2, From Chaplain Chuck Finally, I would like to thank all of you workers out there for the fantastic job you are doing. It will take time but with your help and God’s Blessing, we will get the job done. Thank you all and God Bless you. In His Service Chaplain Chuck Tyler (Note: It is possible the April 12 Dixon service may be continued to sometime in May.) Chaplain Chuck and Rick Proietti Continued from Page 2, Redding MIAP Service Herewith the message from Bud: “Thank you brother for getting us out there for this history making Mission. And thank you, too, for starting the event and encouraging the CHP representatives to the mourners area. What brief conversation I had with the those that rode as escorts told me that there was little to criticize for the mission. It appears that most of us were left a little in awe that we were the mourners and that none of the deceased warriors had family, by blood or oath, in attendance. I've thought some about this since my introduction to you guys. Fred, you are not the only cry-baby in this group. I saw several tough guys, this afternoon, that helped me stand straight and hold my flag high through my tears. Thank you for letting me be part of this effort...Bud” Bud giving a ride to a WWII vet after an honor service for his roommate and fellow vet..
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