Charles County raises POW/MIA flag in special ceremony - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

Charles County raises POW/MIA flag in special ceremony

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Francis Desales Wills Francis Desales Wills
LA PLATA, Md. -

First, the American flag was raised. Then below it, the POW-MIA flag.

As the flags inched upward toward a crisp blue sky, somebody else was coming home. That person is 22-year-old Francis Desales Wills. In 1966, he went off on a mission in Vietnam and has been missing ever since.

"When we got the information that he was missing, my mother thought that she was going to have to put me in the hospital because we were just that close," says his sister, Christine Wills Poteat.

Francis Wills' siblings made sure his children always knew about their dad - especially the way he looked out for the family.

Years later, a stranger, Jim Shekleton, started looking out for the family too. With help from the Rolling Thunder Maryland Chapter 1, he worked to make Wills' hometown of La Plata in Charles County the first place in Maryland to fly the POW-MIA flag every day at the county office building.

"Someone once said that dying for my country isn't the worst thing that could ever happen - being forgotten is," says Shekleton. "Raising this flag today, it shows that these men will never be forgotten."


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