02/27/2005

"Dear Sir, What is being done to determine the fate of my father USAF, who was last seen in enemy hands?

My father is CMSGT Thomas Moore, USAF

SYNOPSIS: On October 31, 1965, four U.S. Air Force personnel were captured while traveling by truck from Vung Tau to Saigon. This incident occurred on Route 15 at grid coordinates YS224805, just on the border of Binh Hoa and Gia Dinh Provinces of South Vietnam. The individuals involved in this Incident are SSgt. Samuel Adams, SSgt. Charles Dusing, TSgt. Thomas Moore, and SSgt, Jasper Page.

Jasper Page escaped, and successfully returned to friend hands. My father and the others did not.

On November 2, 1965, while being taken to a detention camp, Jasper Page, Managed to escape and return to U.S. control. It was reported that Samuel Adams had been shot during the same escape that freed Page, but a defector Identified Adams' photo as a prisoner at a later date. CIA's analysis of This identification has been inconclusive. The names of all three appeared on the died in captivity list furnished by the Provisional Revolutionary Government (PRG) in 1973 at the Paris Peace Accords. The list reflected that they had died during December 1965, but no details were given.

Sir I have work hard the last several years to get my dad off the no further pursuit list, to a place where we are now at which is a recommended excavation. However I am now told that the time frame may not even commence on that for at least 2 possible years due to budget cuts and missions set backs because congressional decisions tool money from the department that does the job to work the POW MIA issue.

I am the daughter of a Missing Man, only one of many family members who have waited a lifetime to find out answers to what happened to a loved one. My mother died seeking those answers. I have grown to adult women with children and now grandchildren and I am still seeking that elusive answer. And that body that I hope to bring home to rest in Arlington. I have not come this far to have some one tell me that because of budget cuts at the congressional level that I will have to wait at least 2 years to get a tentative date for an excavation to begin.

How can we as families believe that you and our leadership have the Fullest Possible Accounting of Our POW MIA’s in Mind when you take Money from the Offices that are to do the job?

 DPMO has lack of leadership, poor moral and no money. Yet my elected officials do not care.

My father and each and every other Man and Woman who remain Missing In Action deserve more that this and so do the families that have been waiting for them.  I was recently at the family update in Savannah GA. When I was literally kicked in the gut to find out that the 2-year time frame at the least is when the excavation might get started on the proposed burial site of my father and the others.  You explain to me, the price you set on my dad. The price of the budget cut. The price of the mission cuts. You explain to me why it has taken them almost 10 years of me begging them to do this excavation, they kept telling me was to big to do to begin with. When crash site were even bigger. Now I have to wait because there is no money.

You are my elected officials, I write to you for help. I know what they are going to do. You will receive the same form letter you receive from any other government office, specifically a military one. “ Let me assure you sir, every we are doing everything possible to account for CMSGT Thomas Moore, and for his family. To give the Fullest Possible Accounting for our Missing Men”

Well sir. I challenge you.  I Challenge you to ask about the budget in the office of DPMO, JPAC, and the Central Identification Lab. I challenge you to ask about the leadership level from the Pacific command, to the General who runs JPAC to when is the new leader going to take over DPMO.

And I challenge you to find out can they get my dads case placed up for excavation quicker than the 2 years I am being quoted.

   Thank you

Diane Moore,

 Daughter Of / CMSGT THOMAS MOORE, USAF/ POW MIA 10-31-1965, REFRO # 0180

From: "Diane" <norad65@comcast.net>
 Date: 2005/06/01 Wed PM 07:53:28 EDT
 
 Subject: A memorial day to cherish
 
 A short story for a great weekend.
 
 This weekend Chris and I traveled to Lake Butler FL.
 This is where my dad grew up from a small child until he entered the service. My grandfather and grandmother Moore lived there until they died.
 
 We traveled with my 5 year old grandson and my fathers name sake.
 
The memorial day remembrance ceremony was not a fancy one, no big military whoha circumstance or Mayors and such being the VIP's.
Instead a very small country town with extreme pride in their men and women who serve in the military and their families.
And a very proud town, who wanted so much to have answers to a hometown boy, my dad.
 
They truly never knew what became of him, other than he was MIA, as my grandparents died before they truly knew daddy was a confirmed POW. And I truly never knew my fathers family , as after my dad went missing my mother moved us back to LA /Ms.this is  where her family was from and of course with the deaths of my grandparents things just were not to be like knowing much on that side.
With a writing I wrote on Memorial day 2002 being posted by the POW MIA network, a few VFW men learned of me about 10 days ago through the internet and it being read at the District VFW meeting in FL.
To make a long story short, I was called within a day of this happening and told by the caller he knew of my dad and his family , that he was from Lake Butler, and knew of men who grew up with my dad.|
Friday morning a call came inviting me to the memorial day remembrance and a question, would I speak. I was speechless but found the ability to say yes ,but I am not sure what you want me to say.
The reply was please read what I had wrote, it was felt it truly said it all.We went, and I did. and what I found was a piece of my family history, my dads childhood friends and some of his cousins.
The welcome and the warmth and love from the people there was genuine and I was made feel like I belonged to them.
I have to now really put into written words what transpired in this little town and the day that brought me closer to people who knew daddy from a little boy to the man who entered the Air Force. And that will take time as I am filled with many emotions and wish I had recorded all the shared memories that was given to me.
 
While we all know the ole saying, "You can never go home again" might be right, And that for my dad and those unaccounted for were never able to do. I for one made the trip in lue of my dad, and found a town who still loves, misses him and friends that are extremely proud to say that they knew him.
 
I just want to let you all know that what ever the thing you do, to bring comfort to families of those who remain lost, does have a world wide connection . And means the world to me. And to Mary and Chuck, thank you so much for continuing to leave my letter posted. You have no idea what this did for a small town, the man who left it , and his daughter who returned to it.
 
 Diane Moore
 daughter of
 Cmsgt Thomas Moore
 
 
 
 Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious
 triumphs, even though checkered by failure, than to take rank
 with those poor spirits who neither enjoy much nor suffer much,
 because they live in the gray twilight that knows not victory
 nor defeat.
 ~Theodore Roosevelt~

June 03 2005 

Memorial day 2005, A weekend to remember.

I hardly know how to begin to put into words the memories that Memorial Day 2005 made for me. I guess in some ways it began with Memorial Day 2002.

 In May 2002 I was filled with emotions that were not easy, ones that were stronger than any other that I can remember.

One night I awoke, got up and sat down at my computer and started typing, when I was done I sent it out to some friends, family and veterans that I know. It was titled, “I am the daughter of a forgotten American Hero”. Title as such due to the wrenching heart ache that men like my dad who are still unaccounted for , listed as Missing In Action seem to be placed on the back burner so to speak. Soon I was receiving emails telling me it truly hit home. My husband told me it was a great piece of writing. I more or less shrugged it off.

 

My father is Chief Master Sergeant  THOMAS MOORE, USAF.

POW MIA 10-31-1965 unaccounted for, South Vietnam.

 

In many circles that phrase tells it all, in many others the term POW MIA means nothing.

And goodness say Vietnam and many all but snuff you out. A piece of American history that just soon to be forgotten put aside and never be mentioned. However there are many who did great things during Vietnam, men and women who have stories that have done things only few dream about. Their families patiently waiting at home for their return. Then there are others who waited at home, only to find there would be no return of their loved ones who also did great things and were not ever going to be able to share stories.

  That, I suppose is one reason I wrote all the things I did in my Memorial Day 2002 remembrance letter.

One place I shared my letter with was with the POW network, which Chuck and Mary Schantag have, these people have done remarkable things in educating the public about multiple items that deal with our POW MIA issue. Among a few is a book called “More than a Band of Metal” which I have the honor of having my letter in, and they keep it posted on their website. Both of these resources have brought many emails and letters to me wishing me the best in my endeavor for seeking answers on my father. And prayers and thoughts that his remains be found and returned home to American soil. Along with all of these wonderful letters have come people who have had for many years in their possession, POW bracelets with daddy’s name engraved on them, who want to give them to his family. This humbles me, and often brings me to tears. But all that I hear from often makes me feel it is a way that he has to communicate.

This May however I think brought to me a true desire. To learn more about my dad as a child. And again I owe my thanks to Chuck and Mary and the POW network.

 On May 13th, I received a phone call. Not one that I expected in any way. It was from a man who knew of my dad and his family in a small town in Florida. Sam was his name

 I was speechless and my heart was in my throat.

   He was apologizing for calling , but he needed to know if what he had only learned was true. He had been to a district VFW meeting that weekend and heard my letter of 2002.

He was there with two other men, who had also known my dad.

We spoke for a few minutes  I told him yes to the question , I was indeed the daughter of one CMGST Thomas Moore who was still POW MIA, there was a moment of silence on both sides of the telephone, a little more talking and then we exchanged info. Told me if I wanted to talk more to please call him, I told him I would.

I was stunned, to say the least but happy to know that someone from my dads past had reached out  took a chance and called.

 Yet another phone call came the Friday before Memorial Day, again it was Sam, inviting me and my family to their Hometown Memorial day Remembrance Ceremony. Well it was actually on my answering machine and before I had a chance to listen to it all the way through there was another ring, and it was Sam, not only was he inviting us to the Memorial day ceremony, he was asking if I would speak. After that I suppose another chapter in my life was made. I agreed to come , said “ I’m not sure what you want me to say” and his reply was read your letter it will say it all.

The town of Lake Butler Florida , that’s the place Memorial day 2005 took place for me, my husband and 5 year old grandson, whom I might say is a namesake to his grandfather and uncle . A  trip to my father’s hometown, to meet with people he knew and did not know. For me it was the latter, I did not know any one.

  We drove down the Sunday the day before Memorial Day Monday, May 30 2005.Six hours in a car with a 5 year old saying “Are we there yet” made for the perfect sequel to the movie. He also kept saying Africa instead of Florida, but of course I with all the swamps, moss and forest he must have thought he was in the jungle.

Lake Butler is a small town, doesn’t have a motel or hotel no hurried pace. Did seem to have changed much from the last time I was there. Some 36 years ago. Last visit I was a young teenager. After that both of my dad’s parents died. No reason to go back . We stayed in the Motel 6 in Lake City, again not so exciting for adults, but to this grandson of mine, he was in the extreme excited mode. Thought the HUGE shower that was shaped like a half circle was Amazing, even called him mom on the c-phone while standing in the shower to tell her about it. Kids aren’t they great, I am sure his great grandpa would think so.

  But as years do, I began to seek for answers to many questions that were not able to be given by my  family.  I needed to know more about the place where my dad grew up , and the people he had been friends with.

 What he was like as a child and a teenager but not by family. Of course I never thought I would find those answers.

We left the Motel 6 in Lake City and drove 21 miles to Lake Butler. Just to make sure of course we had no problems finding it Monday morning by 10 AM.

 And only after a small , oops wrong way , we did.  I told my grandson that this little town was where his great grandpa grew up, and that he had lived here many years earlier.

  I was  telling him of his legacy, one that so far has been about a man who went away to war, and did not come home. And that the POW MIA flag is important. (He calls it the great grandpa flag and I guess in some aspects it is).

 We went to a very old cemetery, and visited his great great grandfather burial place, to the town war Memorial and to the lake, a big dark lake (Lake Butler). Which I told him I am sure his great grandpa swam in.

 Back to the motel 6, after supper, and into bed.

Memorial Day Monday came and went to fast.

The services were wonderful, held at the towns War Memorial, which has the names of the hometown fallen.

Color guard, rising of the flag, the National Anthem, Opening prayer, stage all decorated with Red White and Blue banners. So many nice people who came up to me and my husband. Many of whom knew my dad , who were his friends as a boy and young man, and even a cousin or two of my dad.

 After all the speaking, which I managed to get through my part with minimum tears. And at the End was presented with a folded flag.

We were then invited to attend a hot dog and hamburger feast at the VFW post 10082.

When we arrived at the post we were welcomed with hugs and handshakes, it was as if I had known these men and women all my life. There was at no time a feeling of not belonging.

  Chris was absolute the best grandpa, and husband at this time, he fed Tyler our grandson, and allowed me to visit and talk with the men who had grown up with daddy.

Of course I found out later, Tyler had 4 hot dogs and half a hamburger, two cupcakes, a load of chips, and what appeared to be gallon of ice tea.

 And was the only 5 year old in the VFW post, but treated like he was everyone’s great grandson.

During the course of many conversations, I heard stories of my dad as a child, and teenager, and my grandparents.  But the greatest was to watch the eyes and expressions of those telling them. There were tears, and smiles, and love and pride shared among them all.

 Memories that should have long since faded from them, but some how was able to be brought to surface as if they were kids yesterday.

I have learned much about my dad from my mother, and her family, and of course know the story of his capture, prior, and during by Cmsgt Jasper Page, the only one of the four who was able to successfully escape.

But never knew much about him from his family. Now I have more understanding of how he ticked.

  I learned where a lot of my personality comes from. And more people telling me how much I resemble him.

There was so much happening it was more difficult to have to leave than I thought it would be.

 I feel that they did not want to end it either.

With multiple times of telling we have to go, we did. Only with promises to return, to take more time to find out secretes of long ago that is so desperately needed by me.

I believe I have only opened the door slightly to my father, but will completely open it. Not only for me but to pass on to the youngest generation.

The saying goes; “you can not know who you are, until you know where you come from” is more than a saying. For those of us who have lost loved ones in war, finding those who knew our fathers is important, but most of all it helps with childhood nightmares.

For me the daughter of a man still Missing in Action this has turned in to a beautiful dream that has just begun to happen.

I can not explain the feelings that have surfaced for me to find people who knew my dad in a small town that hardly anyone knows.

Diane Moore
Daughter
CMSGT Thomas Moore, USAF
POW MIA 10-31-1965
South Vietnam.

From: "Moore, Nora D Ms EAMC" <Nora.Moore@se.amedd.army.mil>
To: "'info@pownetwork.org'" <info@pownetwork.org>
Subject: I wrote this last night, it came all of a sudden and I wanted to share it
Date: Fri, 10 May 2002 08:20:37 -0400

I am the daughter of a forgotten HERO. I am the daughter of an Airman who gave his life and his freedom for me.

In the most feeble attempts of writing this I can only hope that when someone reads it that they attempt to understand my feelings, I can not write for my sisters, I can not write for the other children of war, I can however bring to the fore front the differences between Killed in Action and Missing in Action.

There are many Americans who do not have the littlest idea of what it is like to try to comprehend what war does to children, from the smallest toddler to the oldest child who tries to understand why my daddy went away. I have wonderful friends who know what it is like to loose a parent, many whose parent was lost to heart attacks, car crashes, and suicides. These friends and I acknowledge each other's lost and understand the loneliness of being without mom or dad. However there are only a few of us who understand those loses coming from war. We all share in the same questions, the same heartaches, and the same wishes. The biggest shared question being the "What If".

I have read so many stories from the Children of the Wall, Children of the Vietnam War dead. The ones whose names are forever carved into black granite. Well over 58,000 names of men and women, who stand vigil night and day to remind those who pass in front of them.

That Freedom has a price, and that price is not money, but blood of fellow Americans.

Reading stories from Vets, history and other materials is what has educated us to believe many things about Vietnam. Some good and some bad. Movies have done the same.

I was a young girl of 11 when my dad went into his Missing in Action status.

Later it was confirmed that enemy forces while returning to base after a 24-hour pass had captured him and three of his friends.

My dad and the others in the wrong place at the wrong time. No way to defend themselves, nor did they have the chance.

A simple return to base that ended up a terrifying event.

Years have gone by, which in turn have turned in to decades. My sisters and I have families of our own, and my father has grandchildren and a great grand son. Yet there is still the man who is Missing.

I remember like other children of our time the Yellow Cab delivering the telegram, the one that makes mom cry out a very heart-breaking sob. I remember like others those words, We regret to Inform you...

And the other words depending on the status were either, your husband has been Killed in Action or is Missing in Action.

This is where my story will differ from other Sons and Daughters of the Vietnam war, except for a small number. As you see there are less that 2,000 men still listed now has Missing in Action. So that means we MIA kids are very few, the forgotten ones.

When my dad went Missing I remember asking the big question of my 11 years.

What do you mean my daddy is missing, and why can't they find him. How do you lose a grown up man, . This followed me all my life, even after growing up , it is hard to understand why my dad and the other MIA's cannot be accounted for. And it is really hard to understand if it is the men who were last seen alive.

Year after Year, the haunting realization comes , daddy is not coming home. Yet there is no body to bury, there is no funeral, there is not a grave to visit, there is nothing. NO closure.

We were and are still expected to take the harsh reality of our dads Missing in Action and to get on with our life's. And WE DID. With little of no help from any one but our moms and each other , but the each other only came after we were grown.

Our country was torn apart by Vietnam, our flag was burned by Americans, men and women protested our presence in South East Asia, some dodged the draft, and those who went to served were spat upon when they returned,. They were called baby killers, and no one wanted any thing to do with them, no ticker tape parades no welcome homes.

Coffins with flags draped on them returned to American soil and the children grieved, and said good-bye to daddy. 

Yet those whose bodies did not come home were never thought about except by the families and friends. There were those who were Killed in Action bodies not recovered or returned but evidence to the fact that they indeed were killed. Those families are like us MIA families. They have the that same haunting feeling, could my dad still be really alive.

Telegrams came, in the thousands, widows were made, and children grew up to fast.

My mom got hers, and I grew up, the oldest of three girls is not easy. My Christmas's turned into learning how to put toys together, and wrap gives that Santa is supposed to do.

I even learned how to change fuses at 11, and by the time I was 14 I could change the oil in the car.

Yet I was protected somewhat by my mom, she did a great job raising my sisters and me, the best she could do. Yet she could not stop those who told me my dad was also a baby killer, who spat on my sisters, and me or who told me my dad deserved everything he got.

That is hard to understand when you are a little girl, still hard for me to understand now.

Plus mom told us to not talk about dads case, as she said it might not be good for those men who are POW's and if daddy is a POW we don't want to jeopardize his coming home.

Neither was it a good idea to talk with men who had been over there because we don't what to upset them. Whether or not those men were uncles or even cousins.

Now years later we have talked with the men who served and came home , we learned about our dads, and we learned about Vietnam. The men were just as glad to talk as we were to listen.

Yet there is still a difference in the MIA kid, we talk to the Vets, we listen to them, we ask them questions and they help a lot.

We share our stories with others , but our dad's stories are as some would like to say still to political. So not to many people will ask us to speak at functions, yet we still hear, get over it.

We truly have no real place in the Vietnam organizations out there, and don't get me wrong, there are a few that we belong to. Yet I can truthfully say there is fewer that really recognizes who we are. There are those who say that they are working towards the POW MIA issue, but only use it to benefit them when it is needed.

No one knows what it is like to live year after year wondering where is my dad but the MIA child, no one can even come near telling me they understand unless it is another MIA kid.

No one but the MIA child or family member knows what the Missing Man Formation means unless you lost your dad to a plane crash some where and his remains were never found, or a small hand full of broken fragments comes decades later. No on but the MIA child or family member understands the Table Ceremony for the POW MIA , no one but the loved one who sits in silence with a tear as the meaning is read.

To feel happiness and jealously at the same time is another feeling that is something we deal with , happiness when another MIA is found , recovered, and returned to his home land and to his children and loved one, jealousy when you want so much to be standing the same way, watching a flag draped  coffin being so gently carried to a final resting place ,wishing it was your turn to say good-bye.

To my fellow MIA sisters and Brothers, we are very special, we are children who have kept the eternal flame alive that our dads gave us when he became our dad.

Our dads may have been forgotten, by the general population, and we may but a few, but we have a voice and we have the time to make sure we continue the legacy our moms put before us.

As this memorial day approaches we all need to remember.

Never Forget.

Diane Moore
Proud Daughter of
CMSGT THOMAS MOORE-USAF
POW-MIA unaccounted for
October 31 1965