HONOR ALL FORMER PRISONERS OF WAR; REMEMBER AND NEVER FORGET THOSE MISSING IN ACTION HEROES AND THE FAMILIES WHO SEEK THEIR RETURN.
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The National POW/MIA Memorial & Museum at Cecil Field is located on 26 acres in Northeast Florida at the former NAS Cecil Field Master Jet Base (now known as Cecil Commerce Center). The existing Memorial Park was dedicated to those Naval Aviators stationed at NAS Cecil Field during the Vietnam and Desert Storm War eras. The site currently consists of markers and associated planted trees for each of the 16 pilots (known as Hero’s Walk and Freedom Trees), a pavilion with a stage area, a starburst metal display of aircraft, and a granite base seal of this former Master Jet Base. The City of Jacksonville approved a City ordinance to lease this 26-acre property to the organization.
The “Vietnam War Memorial” at Cecil Field was originally dedicated on September 11, 1973 by the families and service members who wanted to ensure these brave men would never be FORGOTTEN. Trees were planted for each pilot and markers added with engravings. A driving force behind establishing the memorial was Mary Hoff, wife of MIA pilot LCDR Michael G. Hoff. Along with other spouses and family members, they assisted in making the memorial a reality. Mary was also instrumental in developing the universal symbol known as the POW/MIA flag. Besides the American flag, this is the only other flag authorized to fly over the White House and the only other flag that can fly on the same pole as the American flag. Undoubtedly, this flag has become a very important symbol for the POWs and MIAs, their families and friends, and the enduring cause that they will never be FORGOTTEN.
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With the Cecil Field POW/MIA Memorial, we can renew our commitment to all those who hove worn the uniform, to the children and families, and thank them for their unselfishness and bravery.
The proposal to build the Cecil Field Prisoners of War and Missing in Action Museum is a great opportunity to honor the service members who did not return home from war.
The POW/MIA Memorial would serve to honor those who fought selflessly and tirelessly to preserve our American values and way of life. This monument would be a haven of reverence, so we may remember them and pay respects to our nation's heroes.
Your proposal to use part of the former Naval Air Station Cecil Field for a POW/MIA Memorial is a fitting location to pay tribute to this very special group. Given that Mary Hoff, the creator of the POW/MIA flag, is a long-time resident of Jacksonville, and that her husband, Lieutenant Commander Michael G. Hoff, is memorialized at Cecil Field, there could not be a more appropriate site for the POW/MIA Memorial.