Monday, April 02, 2007

I came across the below MIAP program while surfing and had no idea this was a problem. I wrote to them for more info so I will keep you posted but I encourage you to check it out it seems like a great cause to honor these men who have slipped between the cracks deserve a dignified military funeral.


Missing in America Project
Veteran Recovery Program

Unclaimed Cremains

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You served your country through a war, or through peacetime. You expected to receive a military burial, recognition by our government of your commitment to our great country. You expected to have honor and respect paid to you as a result of your service to our great country. Instead, you reside on a shelf in a mortuary or a storage facility at a crematorium.

The mission of the MIAP project is to locate, identify and inter the unclaimed cremains of veterans through the joint efforts of private, state and federal organizations. These forgotten veterans have served our country and, as such, deserve to be buried with honor and respect. The impetus for our fine program began in November 2006. The Idaho State Veterans cemetery interred 21 cremains of forgotten veterans, with full military honors and the dignity these fallen heroes so richly deserved. Recently, a state hospital announced that 3500 cremains were on shelves to be identified. (The link to the newspaper article is: http://tinyurl.com/2xrx9u. On the shelf were cremains for the time span of the 1890s to 1971. It is estimated 1,000 of these cremains are veterans. This is happening in every state.

This project has just begun. We need to blanket every mortuary and cemetery in the United States and let them know there are people who desire to claim our veterans. We need to let them know it is our desire to see they are interred with the honor and respect they deserve. They served our great nation. It is now our great nation’s turn to serve them.

The MIAP, nationally, will enter into alliances with other organizations. To achieve its objective, MIAP:

· Has registered as a non-profit corporation

· Is sponsored by the Patriot Guard Riders on a national level. We are seeking sponsorship with other organizations, such as the American Legion. Once the program has been launched in Oregon, the American Legion will evaluate its performance and make a decision on whether to sponsor MIAP nationally.

  • ·Will seek volunteers from all veteran and non veteran groups nationwide. This will encompass locating and identifying veterans’ cremains in funeral homes, crematoriums, mausoleums and cemeteries.
  • ·Will attempt to obtain private funding/grants. The Patriot Guard Riders has generously contributed funds to support our database.
  • ·Will operate its own email and systems.
  • ·Will coordinate all memorial services and escorts with PGR State Captains.
  • ·Will conduct its business autonomously from its sponsors but will include members from the Patriot Guard and other groups.

The veterans languishing on shelves need us. They need America to step forward and ensure they are buried with honor. They need America to show their thanks for their service. Without them, we would not have the freedoms we enjoy today.

The following is a list of contacts for the MIAP:

Operations

Fred Salanti ducpho@miap.us

Planning

Sean Post sean@miap.us

Logistics

Debbi McKay debmckay@patriotguard.org

Inter-organization liaison

Ronny Awtry: bear@patriotguard.org

Information

Cheryl Egan: cdegan@miap.us