Bowling Green, Ohio –
Bowling Green State University, in conjunction with the BGSU Athletics Department, will designate a permanently unoccupied seat in the Stroh Center on Friday, Nov. 7, in between the two basketball exhibition contests to honor the tens of thousands of military personnel who are or were prisoners of war (POW) or have been declared missing in action (MIA).
BGSU is one of only a handful of institutions to have three POW/MIA Chair of Honor seats in three different venues – Doyt Perry Stadium, the BGSU Ice Arena, and now the Stroh Center.
"I am so proud to officially dedicate our third POW/MIA Chair of Honor here at the Stroh Center, joining the other two chairs that we have already designated in both the Doyt and the BGSU Ice Arena," commented BGSU Director of Athletics Chris Kingston
, who retired from the US Army in 2009.
This is the third of five planned seat dedications with the other two designated chairs already in place at the Doyt and at the BGSU Ice Arena. There will also be two POW/MIA Chair of Honor mobile units which will be able to travel to other athletic events.
The dedication is made possible through a donation by retired Marine Corps Col. Ted Jenkins, a BGSU alumnus and former member of the Alumni and BGSU Foundation boards. Jenkins credits the work of the BGSU Veterans Alumni Committee with making the project a reality.
"The concept for this project began with just a discussion and the rest is history," commented Jenkins. "It reminds me of the TV show 'The A-Team' and the line 'I love it when a plan comes together.'"
POW/MIA Chair of Honor is a national program designed to remember prisoners or war and those missing in action. The chair will be permanently installed in the Stroh Center, at the top of section 110, to help visitors and fans remember that even though our service members are not with us, they are not forgotten.
"BGSU's commitment to our nation's armed services dates back to World War II, and we are extremely proud of the hundreds of BGSU students and alumni who have served our country," said BGSU President Mary Ellen Mazey. "This Chair of Honor symbolizes our gratitude and appreciation to those who paid the ultimate sacrifice. They will forever be remembered by students, faculty and staff, alumni who visit the Stroh Center."
Rolling Thunder, best known for their annual "Ride to the Wall" event, is a nationwide POW/MIA rights organization. Hussey Seating Co., who is partnering with Rolling Thunder to provide the chairs for the National Chair of Honor program, donated the POW/MIA Chair of Honor.