MADISON COUNTY, Ky. (LEX 18) – A local group is making sure that one Vietnam soldier’s sacrifices are never forgotten.
On Saturday a ceremony was held to honor Captain Hugh McNeil Byrd, who’s been missing in action for half a century.
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Those in attendance say his bravery and love for his country will never be overlooked.
The local chapter of Rolling Thunder organized the ceremony.
A wreath was placed near his marker at Berea Cemetery, commemorating the time he’s been missing in action.
Tom Reesor is a family friend, who grew up living near Captain Mac.
He says the bond they shared, was a special one.
“We went to church together, scouting together. We had a great time. He learned to fly airplanes, as I did,” said Reesor.
But in 1969, Captain Mac’s airplane never made it back.
On Saturday friends, family and even complete strangers came out to pay their respects.
“I just met a couple, and they didn’t even know him or my parents, but they came,” said Nita Byrd Lumpkin, Captain Mac’s younger sister.
Nita made the trip to Berea from her home in Virginia.
She’s grateful for the support from the Rolling Thunder group.
They vow to “never forget” the brave men and women who never returned home from war.
“My heart will always be rejoicing to know that I was a friend of Mac Byrd, who was a Patriot for this country,” said Reesor.