When the Penncrest High School football team takes on Haverford High School Sept. 16, the Lions hope all but one seat in the stands will be filled.
Media VFW 3460 recently donated funds to the Rose Tree Media School Board to purchase a POW/MIA chair that will be displayed in Louis Scott Stadium at all spring and fall athletic events and the Kaufman Gym during the winter.
Designed to honor those who have not yet returned from war, the chair will serve as a reminder that the individuals are not forgotten. The symbolism is similar to the Table of Honor, set with an unused place setting, glass, slice of lemon (the person’s bitter fate) and lighted candle (hope for his or her return).
The chair notes that “since World War I, more than 82,701 soldiers are unaccounted for. The unoccupied seat is dedicated to the memory of those brave men and women and to the sacrifices each made serving this country.” It will also include the POW/MIA logo, an American flag and the words “We are all thankful. God Bless You. God Bless America.”
The presentation was made by post Senior Vice Commander Ken Delmar, whose son graduated from Penncrest in 2012; Adjutant Joe Casey, Assistant Quartermaster Erik Benson, PHS ’87; and district Athletic Director Chip Olinger.
“It is important for us to remember the guys who did not come home, whether it was a soldier in the American Revolution or the person who went to Iran or Iraq two weeks ago,” said Benson. “We will never forget them.”
The chair will be dedicated prior to the game by the VFW Honor Guard and members of Rolling Thunder, an organization dedicated to bringing full accountability for POW/MIA of all wars.
The board also approved a proposal from the University of Pennsylvania Center for School Studies Council to discuss their community engagement program in preparation for meetings beginning in the fall focusing on the 2017-2018 budget. The organization has worked with several school districts in Delaware County to establish community engagement procedures.