Run held to honor POW/MIAs

By Katherine Clayton Reporter

Friday, Sept. 20 is Missing in Action and Prisoners of War Recognition Day. To honor this day, the Arnold Air Society and the SDSU ROTC are organizing a run that will be held on Saturday, Sept. 21 at 8 a.m. 

The objective is for roughly 45 Air Force Cadets to start the run in Sioux Falls with a small opening ceremony at the Battleship Memorial. Runners will begin in Sioux Falls and they will run to Brookings on the old highway. During the run, two individuals will hold the POW and MIA flags as they complete the run. This self-sponsored and self-organized event is in honor of those that lost their lives fighting for their country.

“This is our first year doing it,” said Leah Vander Vorst, a participant in the run. “We are doing this in honor of our MIA and POW veterans.” 

The Arnold Air Society, SDSU Air Force ROTC, Brookings Police Department, Rolling Thunder, and Silver Wings have collaborated together to make the run happen. 

“We started planning in the summer,” said Brian Hershey, a member of the Arnold Air Society. 

The Arnold Air Society is a ROTC affiliated professional service organization.

“We volunteer and serve our community,” Hershey said.

 The run is a way to volunteer their time to honor MIA and POW. 

Once the Air Force Cadets have made it to Brookings, the BPD and Rolling Thunder will escort the runners to the Veteran’s Memorial in Brookings.

According to Vander Vorst, the run should take around six hours to complete. 

The participants in the run will be Air Force cadets, but Arnold Air Society and Brooking ROTC hope to raise awareness of the run. 

“We want people to know that we are doing this for everyone who has served their country or lost their lives,” Vander Vorst said.

“We want to remember them and we want to thank them for their service,” Hershey said.