A Thanksgiving Day Wish for our POWs and /MIAs and their Families

•November 27, 2008 • 1 Comment

On this day of Thanksgiving, I want to take time to offer my thanks to the families of our POWs and MIAs. Your sacrifices are not forgotten by me and the rest of us in our nation. I cannot begin to know how hard the not knowing has affected you, the families, of our POWs and MIAs. I can only try to think how I would feel if I were in your situation. Of course, neither I nor anyone else can really understand; but, know that your suffering has not been forgotten.

For those missing or prisoners, I offer my prayers and heartfelt wish that you will soon come home to your loved ones. Sadly, I know that all those lost to us will not come home again. Many will not come home alive. But, there has to be some sense of closure that a departed loved one is allowed to be brought home to rest among those who loved them.

May God watch over you and your families. May his peace be with you all. Above all, may you once again come home to those who love you!


SSgt Matt Maupin – “Homeward Bound at Last”

•April 1, 2008 • 5 Comments

Matt Maupin

SSgt Matt Maupin

POW/MIA? April 9, 2004

In May of 2005, I wrote a poem about, then MIA/POW, Matt Maupin.

Remember My Face

It’s been so long now I can’t help but feel,
my life is all over, is this all really real;

I’ve been a prisoner for such a long time,
no one left behind, was that just a line;

They beat and threaten my life with a shive,
name, rank, and serial number, that’s all I give;

Does anyone even remember my name,
or am I a soldier and prisoner of little fame;

How much longer will I be held in this place,
my name is Matt, do you remember my face;

I’m an American soldier who willingly served,
I can’t help but thinking this is so undeserved;

Have I been abandoned in this horrible place,
will I die and disappear without leaving a trace;

What about my buddies, who fought at my side,
are they still fighting, has the war turned the tide;

Will they come for me and free me from this fate,
or will I die in this place a victim of fanatical hate;

The country I love and served with such pride,
has it turned its back on me now, has it lied;

Please don’t leave me behind, it would be a disgrace,
my name is Matt Maupin, please, remember my face?

~ by devildog6771 on May 28, 2005.

Today I want to share another poem I wrote since word of Matt Maupin’s recovery was announced March 30, 2008.

Matt Maupin

SSgt Matt Maupin

POW/MIA? April 9, 2004

Homeward Bound at Last

I’ve spent nearly four years in this barren place,
do people back home still remember my face?
How is my family doing back home?
Have they been left to grieve all alone?
So many times I thought, finally I’ve been found,
as I heard familiar voices approach from all around!
With rescue eminent, I would shout out my name,
I am Matt Maupin, do you remember my name!
Have you come to rescue me true to your word,
Have my cries for help finally been heard?
You kept the promise, “no man left behind.”
The faith I clung to wasn’t just blind!
Then as the voices slowly faded away,
I knew that rescue wouldn’t come this day!
Gradually each time as hope began to fade,
was the command to end search finally made!
Wait, again, I think I hear that familiar sound,
American soldiers’ foot steps and voices all around,
The sand and dirt around me begins to move away,
Yet I am afraid to believe I am found on this day!

Thank you God for looking over me I begin to cry,
as I feel myself lifted and I look toward the sky.
I reflect on my journey these last four years past,
and offer prayer to God I’m “Homeward bound at last!”

A Star-Telegram.com story, reported on March 30, 2009, “Remains found in Iraq identified as Ohio soldier listed as captured and missing since 2004” states that SSgt Matt Maupin’s remains have been found! The military used DNA tests that confirmed SSgt Maupin’s remains were finally found and Matt finally would be returning home to his family.

Matt’s family never gave up their battle to make sure the military did not forget to bring their son home. They never gave up hope Matt would return home alive. But even though Matt will not return home alive and well, at least he “will” return home instead of remaining MIA as happened to so many American soldiers who served in Vietnam”

…Their efforts included trips to the Pentagon and even meeting with President Bush, but they ended in disappointment Sunday: An Army general told them the remains of Maupin, a soldier who had been listed as missing-captured in Iraq since 2004, had been found.

“My heart sinks, but I know they can’t hurt him anymore,” Keith Maupin said after receiving word about the remains of his son, who went by Matt….

My heart also saddens for Matt’s family. I know what it feels like to lose a loved one in this war. My sister lost her only child, a son in 2004. But, not having closure due to Matt remaining MIA/POW and not knowing if Matt was dead or alive was unbearable I am sure.

“On Monday, Defense Secretary Robert Gates expressed sympathy to Maupin’s family.
“This has been especially difficult for the Maupin family because of not knowing for almost exactly four years. So I want to extend my condolences,” Gates said, speaking to reporters aboard a flight to Denmark.”

At this time the Army is releasing no further details regarding Matt. This is because the Army is still conducting an investigation into Matt’s death!

The Maupins were told by an Army official on Friday to expect an update on their son over the weekend, Keith Maupin said. The Army broke the news about their son’s remains at a somber meeting.

“When you look out there in the parking lot and see a three-star general get out of a car, you know it ain’t good news,” Keith Maupin said.

Though grieving at the loss of their son, the Maupins were met by cheers and shouts from the people as the chose to go ahead and ride in a parade celebrating the opening day for the local professional baseball team.

“It hurts,” Carolyn Maupin said. “After you go through almost four years of hope, and this is what happens, it’s like a letdown, so I’m trying to get through that right now.”

On Monday, the Maupins rode as planned in the baseball season opening day parade for the Reds in downtown Cincinnati.

“It was important to be here to let everyone know that we thank them for their support and their love of our family and for standing by Matt as they are today,” Carolyn Maupin said.

Despite a light rain, the Maupins rode in an open convertible and were greeted with applause and cheers all along the parade route. “That touched my heart,” she said. “I don’t think they’ll forget him.”

This was yet another example of the courage and strength of Matt’s parents throughout their long wait for the return of Matt. Both are saddened deeply over Matt’s death. But, there has to be a great sense of relief that finally their son is coming home.

Please offer your prayers to Matt’s family. They will still need our support as they receive the remains of their long missing son and take Matt to his final resting place.

Welcome home Matt!

Matt Maupin, You are not Forgotten!

•March 6, 2008 • 1 Comment

Matt Maupin

SSgt Matt Maupin

POW/MIA? April 9, 2004

Yesterday marked the fourth anniversary of the death of my nephew, Mike, in Kuwait. Mike was my sister’s only child. His loss has devastated her and the rest of the family. It has been especially hard on his four little girls. My Mom, Mike’s Gram, has changed outwardly the most. She has aged dramatically, almost overnight. Of course, she also had open heart surgery again. Finally, she is beginning to start to come out the other side. My sister, well, somehow she goes on in “silence!” I feel the most sorrow for her. It is incomprehensible to me how she has managed to go on as she has after losing Mike. But, the life has left her eyes. At least a huge part of it has. I fear her eyes will always carry that empty look they now have all the time!

Can you imagine how Matt Maupin’s family must feel? I know I can’t. The constant not knowing if your child is still alive would be unbearable, let alone worrying about his health and safety. Is he being treated OK? Does he know he is not forgotten? Has he given up hope? Will he ever be brought home to us again? These and many other questions would be my constant companions for as long as it took to finally know, “What has happened to my son!”

I know it is hard to think about these things, especially when our children also are in harms way or we have lost our own child. But, please, whenever you get a spare moment, say a prayer for both Matt and his family. Pray for his return. Pray for his “safe” return. But, most of all, pray for the family finally having some closure over Matt’s whereabouts.

I think the unknown is the hardest suffering of all for a parent!

A Family Thank You

•February 4, 2008 • Leave a Comment

I recently received an email from the Maupin family thanking the people who still support them as they wait for Matt’s return. I think about Matt often. May he be returned to his family soon. May the family soon have peace and closure. God Bless the family and God Bless Matt!

Still Missing!

•October 8, 2007 • Leave a Comment

As of today, Matt Maupin remains missing in action. Every attempt to recover either Matt or his remains has been fruitless. Recovering Matt remains a high priority.

“We will not forget you, Matt!”

Still Missing – Matt Maupin

•July 26, 2007 • Leave a Comment

Matt is still missing. Our troops are still, to this day, still searching for Matt. There have been several fruitless leads. I cannot imagine the pain and anguish the not knowing causing Matt’s family. I think it would help them a lot if we all sent them our best wishes and let them know that Matt has not been forgotten!

Please, won’t you offer your comments to Matt’s family in this hour of their need?

Dear Mr. and Mrs. Maupin,

•July 3, 2006 • 1 Comment

matt maupin

As the holiday weekend culminates in the grand finale tomorrow, the 4th of July, we will all remember those who have given their all for our country. Remember their families. Remember the soildiers injured, in hospitals, many of whom are far from their families and alone. A visit, a call, an email, whatever, no matter how small makes a difference. I know, because we lost a loved one in this war.

As grief stricken as I and all those out there are who have lost a loved one, I try to imagine what it must be like for you, Matt’s family. I find I am unable to do so.

You have no closure!

Matt was found to be missing or captured early on in the war. Because of a law in existance then and now [unless it just recently was changed], Matt cannot be classified as MIA or a POW. That hinders the military in their search for Matt. The military has tried unsuccessfully to find Matt and free him or return his remains to you.

I can’t speak for anyone else; but, I personally would find the not knowing much harder to bear after all this time. Of course I would never give up hope! But the constant not knowing would be such a cruel existance! How alone you must feel at times?

Let me assure you, you are not alone. There are troops and every day Americans by the thousands who pray for Matt and his family every day. I am just sorry that there is so little I or any of us can do to ease your pain and the torture of the unknown.

God Bless you Mr. and Mrs. Maupin. You can rest assured that Matt is never far from my thoughts. May you be surrounded with the love and support of friends and family tomorrow and everyday.