VA to host virtual event recognizing Prisoners of War and those Missing in Action on Sept. 25

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WEST PALM BEACH — West Palm Beach VA Medical Center will host a Prisoner of War (POW) – Missing in Action (MIA) Recognition Ceremony to be held virtually on Thursday, Sept. 25, from 11 a.m. to noon. To join the ceremony via Zoom go to: www.westpalmbeach.va.gov.

Guest speakers will be Interim Medical Center Director Cory Price a former Prisoners of War, Myrna Molinari - Former Prisoner of War Advocate, Lauren Berkson, Gold Star Daughter of Captain Joseph M. Berkson, Colonel James Ransick - Retired U.S. Army Veteran

Each year the West Palm Beach VA Medical Center hosts an event to honor the sacrifices and remarkable determination of those captured as Prisoners of War (POW) and remember those who remain unaccounted for (MIA-Missing in Action). Due to the impact of COVID-19 this year’s event will be held virtually on Zoom. Interim Director Cory Price will be joined by guest speakers U.S. Army Veteran Colonel James Ransick and Lauren Berkson, Gold Star daughter of Captain Joseph M. Berkson, a United States Army Ranger who was killed-in-action in Vietnam in 1972.

Colonel Ransick is a distinguished military graduate from Arkansas Tech University’s ROTC program. As a Regular Army-Air Defense Artillery officer, his 26 years of active duty service included leadership positions from Platoon to Battalion. His key staff assignments included the Department of the Army, the Joint Chiefs of Staff-JCS, U.S. Pacific Command, the Army War College Center for Strategic Leadership, Joint Task Force-Full Accounting (JTF-FA), U.S. Space Command, U.S. Strategic Command, and as a member of two State Department teams. His primary assignments were in Italy, Egypt, Laos, Washington D.C., Fort Bragg & Fort Hood, and Hawaii.

Ms. Berkson, with the support of the City of West Palm Beach and the community, led the project to build the Gold Star Families Memorial Monument in Trinity Park along Flagler Drive. She worked with the Hershel Woody Williams Medal of Honor Foundation to realize the Foundation’s mission of erecting these monuments in all fifty states. She is currently working toward placing Gold Star Memorial Markers in 16 locations throughout Palm Beach County.

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