On this Missouri Vietnam Veterans Day, the state House plans to consider a resolution that would urge a military agency to resolve the cases of 15 missing Vietnam War soldiers from Missouri. Lieutenant Governor Mike Parson (R) tells Missourinet the state’s heroes are not forgotten.
“When you go into a combat situation or you go into a non-combat situation, guys around you are never from your home state. They’re just soldiers,” says Parson. “Leaving one of them doesn’t matter where you’re from. They all deserve to come home.
The Missourians who are unaccounted for include:
Paul Hasenbeck, Bernard Plassmeyer, Steven Neil Bezold, Donald Martin Cramer, William R. Edmondson, Dickie W. Finley, Frederick W. Hess Jr., Charles W. Marik, Carl D. Miller, Dayton W. Ragland, Dwight G. Rickman, Robert P. Rosenback, John W. Seuell, George Craig Smith and Randolph B. Suber.
“I think as a veteran, it’s something that touches you,” says Parson. “You think 15 out of 6 million people doesn’t sound like very many to the average person, but if you add that 15 to somebody’s family, it’s a big deal.”
Parson worked for the Army’s criminal investigation division and is a former Polk County sheriff.
“Just like anything, sometimes you can quit right before you could have discovered something. I’m a big fan of pushing everybody that says hey – we’ve got to make sure you’ve done everything you could do. We see from time to time there is new information out there. There’s new things that pop up from time to time. It’s no different from working a homicide case, a cold case as we call them in law enforcement. Sometimes a different set of eyes, somebody else to view the case, you find something that’s unique. We’ve seen a lot of success for that on the criminal side.”
Parson says there are about 2,300 missing U.S. soldiers who served in some of America’s wars.
“I don’t know that any one conflict is more important than the other. One might have got more publicity. You know how our country reacted to the Vietnam era versus other times,” says Parson. “I think it should really be the thing where we take a look at all soldiers and try to bring them home.”
The state House will honor today more than 80 Missourians who served their country.