Update 9/20- Governor Bill Haslam has ordered flags over the State Capitol and all State office buildings be lowered to half-staff in honor of Major Howard V. Andre, Jr. of Memphis, who served in the Vietnam War.
Flags should be lowered from sunrise to sunset on Monday, September 23, 2013.
(Memphis) A airmen from Memphis who was missing in action, will be laid to rest at Arlington National Cemetery.
After 44 years, Major Howard Andre, Jr., is coming home.
The last time anyone saw him, Andre he was 34 years old and a navigator in the U.S. Air Force.
On July 8, 1969, his aircraft was hit by hostile fire while on an armed reconnaissance mission over the Plain of Jars region of Xiangkhoang Province, Laos.
“Just about everyday or every other day we would have a plane missing from a particular squadron,” retired U.S. Navy officer Ken Miller said.
Now Andre’s missing remains have been found.
“Its an emotional thing to know that a comrade and family will get closure,” Miller said.
He fought back tears after hearing Andre’s remains were finally found and returned home.
Miller also fought in Vietnman, but he says the biggest mission of his life has been here on the home-front, fighting to bring more servicemen home.
“We will never be satisfied until we know what happened to our friends,” he said.
He and other VFW members work tirelessly with agencies to make sure excavations continue and more remains are found.
Sadly, there are nearly 83,000 Americans still missing or unaccounted for since World War II, according to the Department of Veterans Affairs.
“We need to do that as long as there is one body over there,” retired Marine Sgt. James Lindsey said.
He was part of recovery operations in the late ’60s in Vietnam.
He knows that for families with missing loved ones, their wounds never heal.
“The family especially needs closure,” he said.
Closure Andre’s family finally gets on Monday.
He will buried with full military honors at Arlington National Cemetery.
This hero will finally be home.
On September 20th, as a tribute to Prisoners of War and those still Missing in Action, the well-known POW-MIA Flag will fly over the Tennessee State Capital.