Bucks County officials unveiled a new display Friday morning in honor of National POW/MIA Recognition Day. It contains eight bracelets for eight men who went missing while fighting in the Vietnam War.
This addition is the second tribute in the Justice Center to those who went missing in the Vietnam War. A Chair of Honor also sits in the corner with an American Flag and POW/MIA flag. It states more than 91,000 men have gone missing in war since World War 2.
Both the chair and bracelet display were spearheaded by Clerk of Courts Mary Smithson. She told Pat Wandling on Speak Your Piece the chair remains to “remind those who pass through how important it is to remember those who have been lost and have not been found.”
In fact, it is the Chair of Honor which led to the addition of the bracelets display. A man named Thomas Lyons came in, saw the chair, and sought out Smithson.
Lyons told the Clerk of Courts his brother Frank served in the Vietnam War as part of the Air Force. While Frank was overseas, their mother Evelyn began distributing POW/MIA bracelets she received from out of state.
These bracelets were to remain worn until the person who name was engraved returned from a camp or was accounted for. Thomas Lyons wore one for decades.
Evelyn gave her son five additional bracelets before passing in 2018. The combined six, with two additional donated bracelets, sit on a layer of velvet in the case.
The following names are displayed:
- Capt. Walter Sigafoos
- Lt. Daniel Thomas
- Capt. Joseph Davies
- Capt. Dennis Ellers
- Capt. Hobart Wallace Jr.
- Co. Joseph Bowers
- Sgt. George Brown
- Spec. 4 David Munez