EGLIN AFB, Fla. (WKRG) — A ceremony on March 9, 2023, is set to honor those captured in the Vietnam War and brought back home 50 years ago.

The Air Force Armament Museum is hosting a free reception and program to honor seven POWs that now call Okaloosa County home.

POWs to be honored:

  • Brig. Gen. George “Bud” Day, USAF, Ret
    • (Feb. 24, 1925 – Jul. 27, 2013)
  • Col Richard A. Dutton, USAF, Ret
    • (Apr. 24, 1930 – Dec. 12, 1999)
  • Col Keith Hall, USAF, Ret
  • Col Howard Hill, USAF, Ret
  • Col Ed Hubbard, USAF, Ret
  • Col Ron Webb, USAF, Ret
  • Lt Col Dave Gray, USAF, Ret

“Four of them will be able to speak for five-seven minutes during the program,” said Tricia Flaherty, Director of Operations at the Air Force Armament Museum. “Between 5:30 and 6:15 the public can talk with them as well and meet them at the museum.”

The event will have free admission to the museum, beer and wine, food from Magnolia Grill and an auction.

Event Details:

  • Thursday, March 9, 2023
  • 5:30-7:30 pm
  • Air Force Armament Museum (100 Museum Drive, Eglin Air Force Base, Florida)
  • Outside the West Gate of Eglin AFB.
  • Free admission, food and drinks

“The museum foundation is run mostly off donations, the museum gift shop will be open at the event but we hope people come and donate to our cause as well,” said Flaherty.

The event marks the 50th anniversary of POWs coming home during the Vietnam War.  On February 12, 1973, the first of 591 U.S. prisoners began the trip home with more flights returning until late March.

The United States fought in the Vietnam War for 10 years from 1965 to the fall of Saigon in 1975. The men honored at the March 9 reception continued their service in the United State Air Force after returning home.

“We hope this brings a feeling of strong patriotism and respect for what these men captured endured in those days,” said Flaherty.