36 Wing to host week long POW/MIA events
ANDERSEN AIR FORCE BASE, Guam -- Team Andersen is holding four POW/MIA events at various locations Sep. 15-19, on Andersen Air Force Base, Guam.
The four events that will be held include a ruck march, a 5k run and POW/MIA challenge, a 24hr vigilance run and a retreat ceremony.
The POW/MIA event kicks off a Bataan Memorial ruck march, which will start at the Wing headquarters building at 6 a.m. and will end with a retreat ceremony.
The ruck march is four miles long and participants are required to wear Airman Battle Uniform, a water source, boots and a backpack with a weight of 36lbs. One team is allowed per unit and teams must consist of one officer, one senior non-commissioned officer, one female and six to 30 personnel. The march will be held in remembrance of the Bataan Death March in which thousands of Filipino and American prisoners of war died before they could reach their destination at Camp O'Donnell after being captured by Japanese forces in April 1942. Nearly 100,000 U.S. and Filipino soldiers defended the Philippines from Japan for four months before surrendering.
"We have a week's worth of events planned and encourage everyone to participate," said Senior Master Sgt. Latricia Roberts, 36th Logistics Readiness Squadron quality assurance evaluator. "When participating in these events, our main goal is to remember the prisoners of war; we will exercise this through the various activities such as the "Never Leave an Airman behind" challenge."
During the Never Leave an Airman behind challenge, volunteers will need to be in military Physical Training gear or civilian workout gear. The challenge is held in conjunction with a 5k race and consists of several stops along the route where teams of four will participate in different workouts such as burpees and spider-man push-ups. The goal of the challenge is to start as a team and finish as a team. The challenge begins at 6 a.m., Sep. 17, at the Palm Tree Golf Course driving range.
A 24hr vigilance run begins at 4 p.m., Sep. 18, starting at Arc Light Park. The run is being conducted to honor and recognize the sacrifices of American POWs and those who are still missing in action.
To conclude the week's events and close out the vigilance run, a retreat ceremony will be held at 4 p.m., Sep. 19, at the Wing headquarters building.
"We're hoping to get some great participation out for the event," Roberts said. "We want everyone to keep in mind the true meaning behind these events, which is to pay respect to our prisoners of war."