A National POW/MIA Recognition Day event is scheduled for 6 p.m. Friday evening, Sept. 16, at the corner of Riley Road and Route 4 in Jay. Pictured from left at last year’s ceremony are John Dube, Dave Lachappelle, Clyde Pingree, Jim Manter, Don Frechette, Larry Bilodeau and Paul Bright. File photo/Livermore Falls Advertiser

REGION — Area veterans will hold ceremonies this month to remember 9/11 and highlight POW/MIA Recognition Day.

Sunday, Sept. 11, community members are invited to meet at 2 p.m. in Union Park in Livermore Falls.

Faith Maurais, a junior at Spruce Mountain High School in Jay is expected to sing the National Anthem. She was the VFW Post 3335 Red, White, and Blue contest winner in 2021.

Veterans and area first responders are also expected to participate.

At 6 p.m. Friday, Sept. 16, the 31st annual POW/MIA Recognition Day service will be held at the POW/MIA Memorial at the corner of Route 4 and Riley Road in Jay. Frank L. Mitchell VFW Post 3335, AMVETS Lane Dube Post 33, and American Legion Post 10, and their auxiliaries sponsor the service which will be held rain or shine.

The ceremony will include the arrival of the United Bikers of Maine and American Legion riders under escort of local sheriffs and police departments, recognition of local POW/MIAs, laying of wreath, local singers and musicians performing patriotic songs, and local honor-guard units.


“This year’s event will include participation of our young future leaders,” Post Judge Advocate Jim Manter said. “We will have in the ceremony Boy Scouts, Civil Air Patrol color guard, and local students singing the National Anthem. Local musicians Jan and Tom Gill will begin performing patriotic themed music at 6 p.m. The ceremony will officially begin once the bikers arrive, and all riders are safely parked, approximately 6:15 p.m.”

Of note as well is that “Maine DOT and the Town of Jay have agreed to close the Memorial Bridge to traffic, from approximately 6 to 6:45 p.m.” Manter noted. “The Crash Road will be closed to through traffic at the corner of Riley Road and Crash Road, and the Riley Road will be closed at the junction with Route 4. This is being done for the safety of attendees and ceremony participants. We certainly hope the public is understanding of the brief inconvenience of the road closure while we honor our POW/MIAs.”

Veterans from the Farmington area will participate in the Jay ceremony this year, Gordon Webber, Commander of VFW Post 10881 in Farmington, said Friday morning, Sept. 2.

Manter had contacted him earlier in the week, Webber put it before members at a meeting Thursday night, and it was decided not to hold a separate ceremony. Members are getting older, have health issues, it will be easier to do just the one, Webber stated.

The annual POW/MIA ceremony is performed to salute the veterans and families of the missing who continue to keep the candle of hope alive for their return. The ceremony is celebrated on National POW/MIA Recognition Day, which is always the third Friday of September.

For more information on United States POW/MIA visit the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency website at http://www.dpaa.mil/. More information about the local service can be found by calling VFW Post 3335 at 207-897-5112.

“Since World War II, more than 83,000 military men and women are missing or unaccounted for, and never made it home,” VFW Post 3335 Commander Rick Merrill stated. “This ceremony is to recognize the sacrifice and dedication of our military members and families, that we shall never forget them. Please join us for this important community ceremony.”

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