MADISON, Maine — American Legion Post 39 held a POW/MIA Table Presentation Monday, April 1, at the Post Hall.
Ron Page, the Post Americanism Officer, narrated the ceremony while the cadets of NCB39 Battalion, U.S. Naval Sea Cadet Corps set each item on the table. Numerous Legionnaires, Auxiliary Members, SAL Members, Legion Riders, family and friends attended the presentation. The table, chair and each item placed on the table has a special significance.
The small table is a place of honor. It is set for one. This table is our way of symbolizing that members of our profession of arms are missing from our midst. They are commonly called P.O.W.s or M.I.A.s; we call them brothers. They are unable to be with us this evening and so we remember them.
This table set for one is small. It symbolizes the frailty of one prisoner against his oppressors.
The table cloth is white. It symbolizes the purity of their intentions to respond to their country’s call to arms.
The single rose displayed in a vase reminds us of the families and loved ones of our comrades in arms who keep faith awaiting their loved ones’ return.
The red ribbon tied so prominently on the vase is reminiscent of the red ribbon worn on the lapel and breasts of thousands who bear witness to their unyielding determination to demand a proper accounting for our missing.
A slice of lemon is on the bread plate as a reminder of their bitter fate.
There is salt upon the bread plate, which is symbolic of the family’s tears as they wait.
The candle is reminiscent of the light of hope which lives in our hearts to illuminate their way home, away from their captors, to the open arms of a grateful nation.
The glass is inverted; they cannot toast with us tonight.
The chair is empty; they are not here.
Remember all of you who served with them and called them comrades, who depended upon their might and aid, and relied on them, for surely, they have not forsaken you.
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