Major Ben Danielson is finally coming home from Vietnam ... he is a MIA no more. There will be a memorial service in Kenyon, Minnesota on June 15th and 16th. If you would like more information about the memorial service, which I plan to attend, please contact me at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
This posting relates to House of Hope Lutheran's Freedom Tree (see thumbnails, click to view expanded). The tree ultimately introduced me to Major Danielson's son, Brian, who I now consider a friend. Brian is a pilot with the USN. The aircraft photos from the USS Nimitz (see right hand margin) are from him.
Here are excerpts from an email I just received from Brian:
"This is to provide some noteworthy information in regard to Major Ben Danielson (my father, and my mother’s husband). For those of you who weren’t aware, he was shot down over Laos on December 5th, 1969. His shoot down prompted an odyssey which has produced some recent revelations.
Based on the results of my trip to the Ban Phanop area of Laos with the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command, combined with the positive DNA matching of returned remains, we have decided to close my father’s case and accept the remains recovered by the government. This decision is a contingency that we had really ever expected and a type of divine intervention that reveals the power of God’s providence.
We invite friends and family, squadron mates, college friends, any current and past POW/MIA supporters, veterans of all wars past and present, and certainly seek the presence of anyone who participated in the Boxer 22 rescue. Our planned events will involve a military tribute ceremony with flyover, a Boxer 22 reunion, a dedicated time to debrief and share pictures of the recent trip to Mu Gia Pass, and will culminate in a funeral service dedicated to the life of the man. Our time frame will be in the 15th to 16th of June, 2007. We are sending this initial email to let you know the news, express our intentions, request your updated contact information, and ask you extend the information to those we may have unintentionally omitted."